National, News

Gov’t seeks $530 Million for health sector transformation

By Bida Elly David & Charles K Mark


National Ministry of Health is seeking funding of 530 million United States Dollars for three years to implement various health transformation projects across the country.

The health sector transformation initiative aims to enhance healthcare facilities, provide medications to ten states and three administrative areas across the country, and support the 1,158 health facilities in 80 counties through a piloting health project.

The allocated funds will be utilized to modernize health facilities, train healthcare workers, procure medical equipment and supplies, and promote public health education and awareness campaigns.

Dr. Malek Santo, the Director General for International Health and Coordination at the ministry, revealed that the project would receive an annual allocation of $157 million for each of the three years.

Dr. Malek mentioned that they received responses from 101 unique partners and received interest from 228 others, indicating the importance of external support for the successful execution of the project.

Despite the limited interest shown by partners, Dr. Malek expressed the government’s desperate need for their support to implement the project.

However, he did not provide a specific timeline for the project’s execution, emphasizing that the lack of funding was hindering their progress.

In his opening remarks, Hussein Abdelbaggi Akol, the Vice President for Service Cluster, highlighted that the allocated budget would address the health challenges faced by citizens, particularly in terms of access to medical services.

“With this project, I wish to emphasize the urgent need to support health workers capacity, especially in the field of nursing, laboratory technology, radiology, energy and pharmacology,” he said.

The project aimed not only to provide consumable supplies but also to strengthen technical practices that contribute to effective medical care.

Acknowledging the withdrawal of some donors and the reduction in budgetary allocations by others, Vice President Hussein expressed sympathy for the country’s precarious health condition.

“However, in the meantime, we call upon the partners to continue helping us until when we are ready to fully assume this responsibility,” he added.

Noting the challenges faced by the young nation since its independence, including the shutdown of oil production in 2012 and two civil wars in 2013 and 2016, VP Abdelbagi said that South Sudan was still recovering from the consequences of these devastating events.

He mentioned that the implementation of the peace agreement had placed a significant burden on the country’s financial resources, impacting vital sectors such as health and education.

The VP urged partners to provide their assistance to alleviate the strain on South Sudan’s national budget and support the nation’s recovery efforts.

“The country is still recovering from the results of those unwarranted wars, the financial burden has denied vital service sectors like health and education that is why we need your support,” he said.

Abdelbagi said he is strongly pushing for the increment of the health sector budget to 10% of the entire national budget.

“I am consolidating together with other major stakeholders in the government to realize this universal healthcare budget bear,” he promised.

He also revealed, the government earmarked 10 million US Dollars for procurement of medicines and yet another 10 million US Dollars for other medical priorities.



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