Source: UK injects $82m in health sector – NewsDay Zimbabwe November 10, 2017
The United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID) has availed $82,1 million to improve sexual, reproductive, health, and nutrition services for women, adolescents and children.
BY MUNESU NYAKUDYA
A big chunk of the grant was expected to finance health interventions implemented under the Health Development Fund while $2,2 million will be for strengthening Zimbabwe’s capacity to prevent, detect and respond to disease outbreaks.
Speaking at the launch of the UK DFID programme to support a resilient health system in Zimbabwe, DFID head of mission in Zimbabwe Annabel Gerry said her country had come a long way in supporting the health system in Zimbabwe.
“Through the UK’s support, the availability of basic medicines in rural health centres has risen from 12% to over 90% and we’ve seen an increase in the contraceptive prevalence rate from 57% to 66%, putting Zimbabwe above the global average and over double the continental average,” she said.
“These are impressive numbers, and it is important to remember that behind every statistic is a life changed and in many cases a life saved. Through this programme, DFID continues to support the recovery of the health system and of health services across the country.”
The programme builds on the progress Zimbabwe has made in reducing maternal and child mortality, expanding full immunisation coverage, increasing the proportion of births attended to by skilled health personnel, increasing access to sexual reproductive health services for women and girls, such as fistula repair surgery, cervical cancer screening and family planning.
Health and Child Care deputy minister Aldrin Musiiwa said the country remained focused on achieving the highest standard of health care and quality of life possible for all its citizens.
UN resident co-ordinator Mohamed Ayoya also said a resilient health system was the bedrock of a country’s development aspirations.
The programme is expected to increase the number of children receiving Vitamin A supplements from 624 248 to 1 101 614, reduce the percentage of adolescents with unmet family planning needs from 13% to 9%, increasing the number of children with severe acute malnutrition cured and discharged from 62% to 70%, increasing the number of women screened for cervical cancer from 240 000 to 465 000, increasing the number of survivors of sexual and gender-based violence accessing services within 72 hours per year from 1 600 in 2016 to 2 300.