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World Bank approves USD 350 million loan to Gujarat for better health services

World Bank has approved a USD 350 million or over  ₹2,832 crore loan to Gujarat for augmenting health services. (AP)Premium
World Bank has approved a USD 350 million or over 2,832 crore loan to Gujarat for augmenting health services. (AP)

  • World Bank has approved a USD 350 million or over 2,832 crore loan to Gujarat for augmenting health services with a special focus on adolescent girls and disease surveillance
  • The funding will come from the World Bank arm International Bank of Reconstruction and Development (IBRD), carrying a maturity of 18 years including a grace period of 5.5 years.

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World Bank has approved a USD 350 million or over 2,832 crore loan to Gujarat for augmenting health services with a special focus on adolescent girls and disease surveillance in the state. The Executive Board of Directors has given nod to the loan, said the multilateral funding agency as quoted by PTI.

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

According to the World Bank, the loan amount will be utilized through the state government's Systems Reform Endeavours For Transformed Health Achievement In Gujarat (SRESTHA-G) programme which will enable more people to access a wider range of high-quality health services.

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

However, the World Bank funding will now help the state to expand these services which will also include mental health and palliative health services to strengthen the non-communicable services in the state, as per PTI reports. 

Auguste Tano Kouame, the World Bank's Country Director for India said that this program will enhance access to traditional health services for all citizens while also supporting the state's effort to open access to new services, thus contributing to improved health outcomes for Gujarati people.

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

It further stated that SRESTHA-G will put special emphasis on improving the health and nutrition of adolescent girls and boys with priority accorded to 14 districts where more than 70 percent of adolescent girls are anemic.

In addition to this, it will also support a population-based screening process with help from local Accredited Social Health Activists (ASHA) and Auxiliary Nurse Midwives (ANM).

 

(With PTI inputs)

 

 

 

 

 

 

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