New project set to boost health, nutrition services

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The World Bank has provided a concessionary loan of US$23mil (RM94mil) to the government for the Health and Nutrition Services Access Project (Hansa) to support the health sector reform strategy. The Global Fund (US$10mil) and the government of Australia (US$3mil) are co-financing partners. Hansa, launched last week is chaired by the Health Minister Assoc Prof Dr Bounkong Syhavong, and co-chaired by the Country Manager of World Bank Laos, Nicola Pontara. The funds will be pooled at the country level and will jointly finance agreed project programmes and expenditures and cross-referenced in the respective World Bank Financing and Global Fund grant agreements with the government. Hansa is part of a more comprehensive programme to support government priorities, including technical assistance from development partners including the World Health Organisation and other civil society organisations. The objective of the project is to improve access to quality and health nutrition services in targeted areas of Laos and will be implemented over a period of five years until 2025. — Vientiane Times/ANN

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