Garowe, Puntland, Somalia 19 December 2016 – The German Development Bank (KfW) on behalf of the Government of Germany has announced a grant of 23,550,000 Euros (just over US$25.8 million) to provide healthcare to one million people in Somalia’s northern Puntland.
The generous contribution provided by KfW on behalf of the Government of Germany, will be used to provide an Essential Package of Health Services to one million people in Nugal and Mudug regions including 160,000 children and 250,000 women for three years.
The project will aim at reducing the high rates of maternal and child mortality in Somalia. Somalia has some of the worst health indicators in the world with 3,400 women dying due to childbirth or pregnancy related causes in 2015 and one in seven children dying before their fifth birthday, mostly due to illnesses such as pneumonia, diarrhea and vaccine preventable diseases.
At the moment, many parts of Somalia are also suffering from a drought which has led to a lack of safe water and poor sanitation increasing children’s vulnerability to diseases such as diarrhoea and cholera which is likely to result in more cases of malnutrition.
The funding will be used for upgrading various health facilities. At the same time the standard package of health services, including maternal, reproductive, neonatal and child health and nutrition will be continued. The number of deliveries in public health centres is expected to increase from under 16,000 a year to 21,000 in 2019 and the number of children receiving the course of the five-in-one Pentavalent vaccines by 50 per cent with 86,000 children immunized during the three years. There will also be an increase in the number of malnourished children treated in health centres.
“The children are the future of Puntland – and this funding will ensure that they grow up healthy and well nourished,” said Dr. Abdinasir Osman Isse, Puntland Minister of Health. “If we can get more mothers to give birth in health centres, and more children are vaccinated, we will have made important progress.”
“We are grateful to the German Government and KfW for their support for this critical work, which will undoubtedly save lives and improve access to quality health services for some of the most vulnerable in Puntland,” said UNICEF Somalia Representative, Steven Lauwerier.
UNICEF is coordinating with other donor agencies and partners to ensure improved service delivery for children and women in the remaining parts of Puntland and in Somaliland, and in the central and southern regions of Somalia.
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