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Brazilian state of Sergipe to strengthen its health sector with $100 million IDB loan

The program aims to reduce deaths caused by chronic diseases and maternal mortality

The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) approved a $100 million loan to strengthen the health system of Brazil's State of Sergipe and reduce the prevalence of chronic diseases and maternal mortality affecting vulnerable populations.

In recent years Sergipe, the smallest state located in the country's northeast, has seen an increasing prevalence of chronic diseases. In 2011, 26 percent of deaths were caused by circulatory diseases and 12 percent by different kinds of cancer. An additional challenge is the rates of maternal mortality due to lack of access to basic health interventions and the quality gap of services.

The proposed program will support the consolidation of five Healthcare Networks reorganizing and expanding the range and quality of services in different regions by improving clinical practices. This involves the design and implementation of clinical protocols and developing healthcare lines: mother-child, oncology, chronic disease and disability that match prevailing conditions or state health priority.

To do this, there will be an expansion and purchase of equipment for the five medical specialty centers, the cancer hospital, the Specialized Rehabilitation Center and the Women’s Comprehensive Health Care Center. The program includes the construction of the Sergipe Central Laboratory (LACEN) headquarters with its accreditation and the acquisition of vehicles for health service patient transportation.

The program will also seek to increase the management capacity of the Sergipe State Health Department to strengthen its strategic role as coordinator of health policy in the state. The program will also finance the establishment of a strategic core; the development of an integrated health information system, and the strengthening of an Unified Regulation Center to guarantee access and comprehensive care.

The loan is for a 25-year term, with a 5.5 year grace period and an interest rate based on LIBOR. Local counterpart contribution totals $40 million. The executing agency is the State of Sergipe through its State Health Department and the guarantor is the Republic of Brazil.

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