India signs USD 170 million policy-based loan with ADB to strengthen pandemic preparedness, ET HealthWorld

India signs USD 170 million policy-based loan with ADB to strengthen pandemic preparedness, ET HealthWorld


New Delhi: India has signed a USD 170 million policy-based loan with the Asian Development Bank to enhance the country's healthcare system preparedness for pandemics, the Union Finance Ministry said.

According to the Finance Ministry, this loan will help strengthen India's health system's preparedness and ability to deal with future pandemics.

The loan agreement for the 'Strengthening and Scalable Actions for Resilient and Transformative Health Systems Program (Subprogram 1)' was signed on Tuesday by Juhi Mukherjee, Joint Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance, on behalf of the Government of India, and Mio Oka, Country Director, ADB Resident Mission in India, on behalf of ADB.

According to the ministry, the ADB programme will support the government's ongoing efforts to further strengthen disease surveillance, ensure the adequacy and quality of health professionals, and promote climate-resilient public health infrastructure and service delivery.

World Bank official Mio Oka said, “Through this policy-based loan, ADB will help the government fill gaps in policy, legislative and institutional governance and structures and contribute to India's goal of providing universal access to quality and affordable health care services to strengthen pandemic preparedness and response.”

The ministry also said that the programme will be linked with key government schemes and initiatives including the National Health Policy 2017, Pradhan Mantri Ayushman Bharat Health Infrastructure Mission (PM-ABHIM), National One Health Mission and government's efforts to strengthen Human Resources for Health (HRH).

Reform areas targeted through the programme include strengthening disease surveillance and multi-sectoral response, strengthening human resources for health, and expanding climate-resilient public health infrastructure and innovative service delivery.

The programme will also strengthen disease surveillance systems to effectively respond to public health threats by establishing laboratory networks for infectious disease surveillance at the state, union and metropolitan levels and building strong data systems to monitor and coordinate national health programmes for the poor, women and other vulnerable groups.

This will improve the governance of India’s ‘One Health’ approach, and also improve the multisectoral response to emerging infectious diseases.

ADB will support policy reforms that ensure that there are sufficient and competent health professionals and staff available. This includes legislation that regulates and maintains standards of education, services, and professional conduct of nurses, midwives, allied staff, and doctors.

The ministry said the programme will help manage integrated public health laboratories in five states and district critical care hospital blocks to improve services for infectious diseases and critical illnesses. It will assist inter-sectoral governing bodies and multi-sectoral task forces in establishing green and climate-resilient healthcare facilities. Innovative solutions for service delivery will also be supported. (ANI)

  • Published on July 3, 2024 at 12:33 PM IST

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