ADB OKs $600-M loan to improve PH health services | Inquirer News
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ADB OKs $600-M loan to improve PH health services

/ 04:46 PM November 19, 2021
Patients pack government hospital in Metro Manila amid rising COVID-19 cases

Patients are watched over by relatives and hospital aides inside the COVID-19 emergency room of the government hospital National Kidney and Transplant Institute, which has declared overcapacity amid rising coronavirus disease (COVID-19) infections in Quezon City, Metro Manila, Philippines, April 26, 2021. REUTERS/Eloisa Lopez

MANILA, Philippines — The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has cleared on Friday a $600-million policy-based loan that seeks to help the Philippines provide quality and equitable health services.

The multilateral development bank said the provision of the loan is aligned with its “Build Universal Health Care Program” which aims to support the Philippine government’s efforts in improving the delivery and financing of health services.

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“This [Build Universal Health Care] program seeks to boost the government’s ability to achieve its UHC (universal health care) goals and provide timely and equitable health care services, especially for the poor and marginalized across the country,” ADB Director of Human and Social Development for Southeast Asia Ayako Inagaki.

According to the ADB, the Build Universal Health Care Program seeks to augment the implementation capacity of the Health Department and Philippine Health Insurance Corp., while bolstering collaboration among local government units (LGUs), agencies, and the private sector.

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Aside from the $600 million loan, the ADB will also “administer a $2 million technical assistance grant” from the Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction to support LGUs’ health policy reforms.

The Manila headquartered bank added that it will provide technical assistance to the government as it gears up to implement the next set of UHC-related reforms by 2023.

ADB targets to maintain its efforts in eradicating extreme poverty in Asia and the Pacific. The bank assists developing member countries and partners by providing loans, technical assistance, grants, and equity investments, among others.

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