World Bank approves $258m for Pakistan’s National Health Support Program

To help accelerate efforts for universal healthcare coverage
<p>WB sponsored program aims to improve quality and equitable access to healthcare services. Photo: Online</p>

WB sponsored program aims to improve quality and equitable access to healthcare services. Photo: Online

The World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors approved on Wednesday $258 million for Pakistan’s National Health Support Program (NHSP) to “strengthen primary health care systems and to accelerate national efforts towards universal health coverage” in the country.

The program aims to improve quality and equitable access to healthcare services, especially in communities lagging behind national and regional-level health outcomes.

It will focus on healthcare reforms across three main areas: health coverage, improved governance and healthcare financing.

The WB-sponsored program will help improve provincial primary health care systems particularly in approximately 20 districts that does not have adequate access to health and nutrition services.

The NHSP is co-financed by the International Development Association ($258 million) and two grants ($82 million) from the Global Financing Facility for Women, Children and Adolescents (GFF), including a $40 million grant for protecting essential health services amid multiple global crises.

“Pakistan continues to make strides in health reforms toward ensuring access to primary healthcare services, especially for children and women during pregnancy and childbirth,” said Najy Benhassine, World Bank Country Director for Pakistan. “By strengthening provincial health systems, this program is foundational to building the country’s human capital and improving health and nutrition outcomes for its citizens.”

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