Finance Minister Hon. Dr. Bwalya Ng’andu says the Zambian Government has committed itself to progressively increase the budget allocation for health care services.
Dr. Ng’andu indicated that this year, 13.43% of the budget allocation for health care services is for the primary health care needs.
The Finance Minister said this at the official signing ceremony between Zambia and Japan for the exchange of notes on the project for Japan’s Grant Aid “Economic and Social Development Programme” – procurement of health centre kits.
“Firstly, allow me to express our gratitude to the government of Japan for the continued support to the Zambian government in efforts to uplift the health and living standards of our people. Your support as reflected in this project is yet again a clear indication of your unwavering commitment,” he said.
“You may wish to note that; the government of Zambia has in the past benefited from a similar grant where the Japanese government procured health centre kits for the ministry of health and the support went a long way in addressing the shortages of medicines. I wish to state that the commodities were equitably distributed.”
He further indicated that through the signing of these exchange of notes, Japan will provide a grant of 300 million yen or US$2.82 million to finance, the procurement of health centre kits to respond to the immediate primary health care needs of the citizens.
Dr. Ng’andu stated that the Government recognizes that strong health systems, through use of primary health care approach, is a cornerstone to meeting vision 2030 aspiration.
“My government has further acknowledged that kits are an effective solution to healthcare challenges because they provide a guaranteed package of key essential medicines in the right quantities at the right time for most people especially in rural areas,” he said.
“To adequately carter for primary health care needs of the present Zambian population, about 2,500 health centre kits is required per month. Therefore, the procurement of health centre kits by the Japanese government will assist the Zambian government through the ministry of health to respond to the immediate health commodity needs.”
He reiterated government’s commitment to ensuring that the kits will be put to good use and ensure all provinces benefit.
“I am confident that through this support of health centre kits will make a real socially desirable impact on the health of the Zambian people. The health kits will indeed go a long way in achieving the universal health coverage. Let me simply end by thanking the government of japan once again, and most sincerely for the support they continue rendering to the government of the Republic of Zambia,” said Dr. Ng’andu.