File - World Bank
CAIRO – 28 June 2018: The Executive Board of the World Bank in Washington unanimously approved Thursday to support Egypt’s plan for the development of the health care sector worth $530 million, Minister of Investment and Governor of Egypt to the World Bank Sahar Nasr said.
The minister clarified that this decision reflects the bank’s conviction of the importance of this vital sector as well as the conviction of Egypt's political leadership and the bank of the seriousness and effectiveness of the reforms undertaken by the government to achieve a comprehensive surge in health care services.
“This is the largest support provided by the bank to Egypt in the field of health,” she noted.
The support will focus on specific axes that represent Egypt's priority; developing various aspects of health care services, including primary and community health care, strengthening family planning services, and promoting intensive treatment as well as prevention efforts related to the control of virus C, Nasr stated.
She added that it will also boost the institutional capacities of the state to ensure the sustainability of the ongoing reform of the health sector, supporting a strong transformation agenda in the sector to put an end to the hepatitis C virus in Egypt.
“The project will enhance the quality of basic health care services in 600 health units and 27 hospitals in nine governorates (Ismailia, Suez, North Sinai, South Sinai, Qena, Luxor, Aswan, Alexandria, and Marsa Matrouh) as the first phase of the new insurance law,” the minister stated.
She explained that the project will strengthen the activities aimed at maintaining safe blood supply to the population to reduce one of the main causes of Hepatitis C infection.
The project will also provide the necessary assistance for blood transfusion services in terms of using the most recent technology to examine all blood bags and detect any transmitted infection (One million bags of blood annually)- supplemented and replaced with the current fleet of portable blood donation vehicles- and purchasing 30 new blood donation units and 15 blood transfusions to support the current fleet.
The minister also referred to the bank’s support in the education sector which reflects the bank’s keenness to be Egypt's true development partner in various sectors.
‘’This project aims to tackle Egypt’s top health agenda priorities: eliminating Hepatitis C , strengthening community, primary, and secondary healthcare services and addressing public health concerns including blood safety, family planning and non-communicable diseases," Minister of Health and Population Hala Zaid said.
For his part, World Bank Country Director for Egypt, Yemen and Djibouti Asad Alam said that this project is about investing in people, adding that improving Egypt’s health care system will strengthen the country’s human capital and further build the foundation for growth and prosperity.
In April, the World Bank Group announced signing an agreement worth $500 million with Egypt to develop pre-university education.
The World Bank said that this agreement is to support Egypt’s Education Reform project, targeting to improve teaching and learning conditions in Egypt’s education system.
The project, which will expand access to quality kindergartens for around 500,000 children along five years, will train 500,000 teachers and education officials, while providing 1.5 million students and teachers with digital learning resources.
The current portfolio of the World Bank in Egypt includes 16 projects for a total commitment of $6.69 billion, according to the World Bank’s statement.
The bank finances projects in key sectors including energy, transport, water and sanitation, agriculture and irrigation, housing, social protection, as well as health and education.