In Bangladesh, a trust fund for health care

Mothers and their children in Bangladesh. A multidonor trust fund will pour $280 million into the Bangladesh Health Sector Development Program, which aims to improve the health of women, children and the marginalized. Photo by: Todd Post / Bread for the World / CC BY-NC

A multidonor trust fund is set to give a boost to Bangladesh’s $7 billion health care program.

On Wednesday (Sept. 12), the World Bank and the Bangladeshi government signed a Multi-Donor Trust Fund Grant Agreement. Under it, $280 million coming from the United States, Australia, the United Kingdom and Sweden will go to the Bangladesh Health Sector Development Program, which aims to improve the health status of people in Bangladesh, particularly women, children and the marginalized.

The government will finance 75 percent of the program. The World Bank will also provide a $359 million credit through its anti-poverty arm, the International Development Association.

The program’s focus will be on improving emergency obstetric and newborn care services, and boosting the nutrition of expectant mothers and their children. It will also strengthen health sector planning and resource management, human resources development, management of pharmaceuticals and health information systems, and the maintenance of health care facilities, according to a press release.

“The Government’s priority is to improve access to and utilization of health services in order to reduce morbidity and mortality, particularly among infants, children and women; reduce the population growth rate; and improve the nutritional status, especially of women and children,” Arastoo Khan said. He is Bangladesh’s Economic Relations Division additional secretary.

Canada, Germany and the Netherlands have also pledged to contribute to the fund “in the near future.”

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About the author

  • Ravelo jennylei

    Jenny Lei Ravelo

    Jenny Lei Ravelo is a Devex Senior Reporter based in Manila. She covers global health, with a particular focus on the World Health Organization, and other development and humanitarian aid trends in Asia Pacific. Prior to Devex, she wrote for ABS-CBN, one of the largest broadcasting networks in the Philippines, and was a copy editor for various international scientific journals. She received her journalism degree from the University of Santo Tomas.