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Article on Health ArdorComm Media Group ADB Approves $170 Million Loan to Strengthen Health Sector in India
Article on Health ArdorComm Media Group ADB Approves $170 Million Loan to Strengthen Health Sector in India

ADB Approves $170 Million Loan to Strengthen Health Sector in India

-By ArdorComm Media Bureau

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved a $170 million policy-based loan to enhance India’s readiness and capability in the health sector to address future pandemics. This funding, under the Strengthened and Measurable Actions for Resilient and Transformative Health Systems (Subprogramme 1), will support the implementation of the government’s National Health Policy 2017. The policy aims to ensure universal access to high-quality healthcare services across the country.

Sonalini Khetrapal, a senior health specialist at ADB, stated, “The Covid-19 pandemic has taught us valuable lessons and the adoption of several innovative practices that would significantly strengthen pandemic preparedness and response capacities if consolidated, sustained, and institutionalised. ADB has been working with the Government of India to strengthen its health system and adopt transformative solutions.”

This loan will address deficiencies in governance, legislation, and institutional structures, advancing India’s objective of achieving universal access to quality and affordable healthcare services, Khetrapal added.

Work Towards Disease Surveillance Systems

The programme aims to enhance disease surveillance systems to promptly address public health threats. It will establish laboratory networks for monitoring infectious diseases across states, union territories, and metropolitan areas. Additionally, it will assist in developing reliable data systems to oversee and align national health initiatives targeting disadvantaged populations such as the poor and women.

“The programme will improve the governance and coordination of India’s One Health approach, its multisector response to emerging infectious diseases,” the press release stated.

Efforts to Implement Policy Reforms

ADB will assist in implementing policy reforms aimed at ensuring sufficient and skilled healthcare professionals. This effort includes legislation to oversee and uphold educational standards, service quality, and professional ethics among nurses, midwives, allied healthcare workers, and doctors. “The programme will help public health and health management teams deployed in some states to support public health functions and improve service delivery,” the release said.

The programme aims to oversee integrated public health laboratories in five states and district critical care hospital units to enhance services for infectious diseases and critical illnesses. It will aid the intersectoral governing body and multisector task force in establishing environmentally sustainable and climate-resilient healthcare facilities. Furthermore, it will promote innovative approaches to service delivery.

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