The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has provided additional loan of $110 million for a project for improving access to urban primary healthcare services in Bangladesh through public-private partnerships (PPPs).
To this end, Kazi Shofiqul Azam, Senior Secretary, Economic Relations Division (ERD), and Manmohan Parkash, Country Director, ADB, signed the deals on behalf of Bangladesh and ADB respectively, at a ceremony in the city on Thursday.
"This assistance will support the government to provide access to quality health services, especially for poor households in urban areas," said ADB Country Director Manmohan Parkash.
Parkash said the new financing will focus on strengthening the service delivery system, building on the experiences gained by assisting three similar projects since 1998.
"This project will also institutionalise the project arrangement into the government system and ensure fiscal sustainability of urban primary health care services."
The additional loan will support the Urban Primary Healthcare Services Delivery Project approved in 2012, according to a report on UNB.
The additional financing will cover the cost of a 5-year extension to assist the government to strengthen local health systems and continue to expand the PPP model of contracting to service providers.
It expands coverage to an additional city and 10 municipalities, and will build eight additional reproductive health care centres and 24 primary health care centers.
The sustainability of health services will be ensured through a series of management, institutional, and staffing reforms.
The additional financing will build on previous efforts toward climate change mitigation by adopting solar panels, rainwater harvesting systems, and flood drainage.
The Urban Climate Change Resilience Trust Fund, financed by the Rockefeller Foundation and the governments of Switzerland and the United Kingdom, will provide a $2.0 million grant, to be administered by the ADB.
The government will contribute $30 million towards the cost of the additional financing, while the United Nations Population Fund will provide $1.5 million in-kind technical support.
The project completion date is 31 March 2023.
The current project covers 10 cities and four municipalities representing about 17 per cent of the total 57 million urban population.
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