Bangladesh's health nutrition program gets $460 mln

The Bangladeshi government and the World Bank (WB) on Sunday signed an agreement to provide 460 million U.S. dollars of Development Partners Grant Fund for the Bangladesh's Health Nutrition and Population Sector Program (HNPSP) , local news agency UNB reported.

The HNPSP builds on Bangladesh's achievements in the health sector, targeting resources at the poor and aiming to create a healthcare system that is efficient and accountable to users.

The project has three components. The first one focuses on accelerating the achievements of the health related Millennium Development Goals and the government's poverty reduction strategies and population policy objectives.

The second component focuses on emerging challenges. These include the provision of facilities to deal with accidents and emergencies, as well as the development of services to prevent and treat the growth in non-communicative diseases such as diabetes and heart disease. Increased services will be provided for the rapidly growing urban population and preparation for coping with disasters will be improved.

The third component addresses major policy reforms in the health sector. These will increase management capacity and ability of the government to engage with other service providers, such as non-government organizations, the private sector and civil society.

Speaking on the occasion, Health and Family Welfare Minister Dr. Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain said the population growth rate reduced from 3.0 in 1970 to 1.48 in 2004 while the total fertility rate came down from 6.3 in the 1970s to 3.0 in 2004.

The minister admitted that scarcity of resources is the reality of the country and for that the government has chosen such strategies those are appropriate for mobilizing the limited financial and human assets in pursuit of improved health, nutrition and family welfare for the country's citizens.