In a historic milestone, the government of Nepal and the World Bank recently exchanged digitally signed financing agreements aimed at bolstering Nepal’s healthcare system. The agreements encompass a $100 million concessional loan from the International Development Association and a $3.84 million grant from the Health Emergency Preparedness and Response Trust Fund. These resources are poised to fortify the quality, coverage, and resilience of Nepal’s healthcare infrastructure.
The groundbreaking digital signing of these agreements occurred on October 27, 2023, marking a significant step in Nepal’s partnership with the World Bank. The financing agreements for the Nepal Quality Health Systems Program Operation were formally inked by Mr. Krishna Hari Pushkar, Finance Secretary, and Mr. Faris Hadad-Zervos, the World Bank Country Director for Maldives, Nepal, and Sri Lanka.
The ceremony took place in the presence of the Honorable Minister of Finance, Mr. Prakash Sharan Mahat, as well as distinguished World Bank representatives including Ms. Anna Bjerde, World Bank Managing Director for Operations, and Mr. Martin Raiser, World Bank Vice-president for South Asia. The implementation of the program will be a collaborative effort, led by the Ministry of Health and Population, in coordination with the Health Insurance Board at the federal level. It will also extend to selected provincial and local levels in the Koshi and Gandaki provinces.
The core focus of this program is to enhance the readiness of Nepal’s healthcare system for the provision of high-quality medical services, expand the reach of health insurance coverage, and fortify the nation’s capacity for health emergency preparedness and response at the provincial and local levels.
“Quality healthcare serves as the cornerstone of human capital development. The comprehensive reform agenda set forth by the Nepal Quality Health Systems Program Operation will be pivotal in enhancing access to high-quality healthcare services,” remarked Mr. Krishna Hari Pushkar, Finance Secretary.
Mr. Faris Hadad-Zervos, the World Bank Country Director for Maldives, Nepal, and Sri Lanka, expressed the commitment of the World Bank to collaborate with the government in building a resilient and inclusive public health system. This endeavor seeks to safeguard vulnerable populations and foster improved productivity and human capital development, which are essential for sustainable economic growth.
This significant collaboration is set to bring about transformative changes in Nepal’s healthcare landscape, ensuring better access to quality healthcare for its citizens.