World Bank Board Approves $35 Million to Improve Health Services in Gambia

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By Nelson Manneh

The World Bank Board of Directors has approved an additional $35 million in financing from the International Development Association (IDA) to enhance the quality and utilization of essential health services and support the national public health preparedness system in The Gambia.

On Monday, 1 July 2024, the World Bank Board issued a press release that stated that the Board previously approved $84.5 million for the Gambia Essential Health Services Strengthening Project.

The press release stated that the additional financing will support the completion of the ongoing construction of health facilities, the implementation of the national health insurance scheme, and the interoperability of the electronic civil registration and vital statistics system with the information systems of other sectors.

“This third additional financing will scale up and advance the quality of essential health services in The Gambia. It underscores our commitment to continuously improve healthcare access and quality for all,” said Franklin Mutahakana, World Bank Group Resident Representative. 

“This additional funding is vital to the Government,” said Task Team Leader, Teegwende Valerie Porgo. “The renovation and equipment of the Bwiam General Hospital and Brikama Ba Health Center will enhance service delivery in the rural areas.”

The World Bank’s International Development Association (IDA), established in 1960, helps the world’s low-income countries by providing grants and loan to zero-interest loans for projects and programs that boost economic growth, reduce poverty, and improve people’s lives.

IDA is one of the largest sources of assistance for its 75 client countries, 39 of which are in Africa. Since 1960, IDA has provided $552 billion to 115 countries. Annual commitments have averaged about $36 billion over the last three years (FY21-FY23), with about 75 percent going to Africa.