World Bank President Jim Yong Kim yesterday Thursday announced additional funding of $170 million for Ebola hit countries.
Speaking at a special session on the Ebola crisis at the United Nations Kim said “The global community is now responding with the urgency and the scale needed to begin to turn back this unprecedented Ebola crisis.”
He added “The real challenge now is to bring care and treatment to the most remote areas as well as the cities and then to build a stronger health care system. This funding will help the countries start a massive scale up of training of community health workers and bring needed supplies and equipment.
The $170 million will be new money “for medium- and long-term projects … targeted at rapidly increasing the health care workforce and purchasing needed supplies in order to bring care and treatment to all parts of the affected countries.”
The World Bank press release noted further that “The funding also is aimed at building a stronger health care system because it will aim to train cadres of health workers to bolster care at a community level throughout the affected region.”
World Bank President Kim further remarked, “This is a humanitarian catastrophe, first and foremost, but the economic ramifications are very broad and could be long lasting. Our assessment shows a much more severe economic impact on affected countries than was previously estimated. We have been greatly encouraged by the major increase in assistance given by the international community, but now all of us have to deliver on the ground to match the scale of the crisis.
The press release disclosed that “The bulk of the emergency financing provided to date$105 million in grants out of the $117 million packagewas approved by the World Bank Group’s Board of Executive Directors on September 16, 2014, and is new money provided in grants from our IDA Crisis Response Window. The other $12 million in the emergency financing was reallocated at the end of August 2014 from existing health projects in Liberia and Sierra Leone ($6 million per country) to make some funds immediately available. As of Thursday morning the Bank had already transferred 80 percent of the $117 million package to the three Governments and UN agencies with the remainder of funds to be disbursed by the end of the week.”
“We canwe mustall move more swiftly to contain the spread of Ebola and help these countries and their people. Too many lives have been lost already, and the fate of thousands of others depends upon a response that can contain and then stop this epidemic,” said Kim.
Friday September 26, 2014