World Bank approves $350 million loan to Gujarat for better healthcare

World Bank has approved USD 350 million or more 2,832 crore loan to Gujarat for augmenting health services with special focus on Adolescent Girls and Disease Surveillance in the State. The multilateral funding agency was quoted by PTI as saying that the board of executive directors has approved the loan.

The funding will come from the International Bank of Reconstruction and Development (IBRD), an arm of the World Bank, with a maturity period of 18 years, including a grace period of 5.5 years, the agency said.

According to the World Bank, the loan amount will be used through the state government’s System Reform Endeavors for Transformed Health Achievement in Gujarat (SHRESH-G) program to enable more people to access a wide range of high-quality health services. Will do

At present, Gujarat provides seven health services to its citizens including reproductive, maternal, neonatal, child and adolescent health, communicable and non-communicable diseases (NCDs).

However, the World Bank funding will now help the state expand these services, including mental health and palliative health services to strengthen non-communicable services in the state, as per a PTI report.

World Bank Country Director for India Auguste Tano Koume said the program would increase access to traditional health services for all citizens, as well as support the state’s effort to open up access to new services, thus improving health for the Gujarati people. will contribute to the results.

So far, Gujarat has consistently improved in various key health indicators including reproductive, maternal, newborn, child and adolescent health. But challenges remain as 69 per cent of adolescent girls and 36 per cent of adolescent boys suffer from anemia, the bank said, adding that 10 per cent of rural and 5 per cent of urban residents in the state have mental health issues.

It further states that Shrestha G will lay special emphasis on improving the health and nutrition of adolescent girls and boys, with priority to 14 districts where more than 70 percent of adolescent girls are anemic.

In addition, it will also support a population-based screening process with the help of local Accredited Social Health Activists (ASHAs) and Auxiliary Nurse Midwives (ANMs).

(with PTI inputs)

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