IDB supports health care system of Nicaragua as it responds to the COVID-19 pandemic

Project seeks to mitigate the direct and indirect effects of the pandemia, with special attention on the most vulnerable sectors of society. 

With the goal of boosting the response capacity of the Nicaraguan health care system, the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) reitarates its support to the country providing USD$43 million from its Immediate Response of Public Health to Contain and Control Coronavirus and Mitigate its Effect on the Provision of the Service in NIcaragua.The actions of the program will contribute to reduce the rates of morbidity and mortality from the coronavirus and ease the indirect health care effects of the pandemic, with special emphasis on the most vulnerable populations. The project will focus on three areas: boosting detection and monitoring of COVID-19 cases, strengthening efforts to break the chain of transmission of the disease, and enhancing the country's ability to provide services.

In order to improve the detection and monitoring of cases, financing will be provided to strength 15 laboratories through the purchase of equipment and overhauling of the infrastructure of four of them. Health personnel will be trained to give coronavirus tests and implement health care protocols. Support will be given to modernizing emergency rooms, hospitalization and intensive care units in 12 hospitals so they care better for patients with COVID-19. These hospitals include ones in Río San Juan, Siuna and others that provide care for indigenous and afrodescendant people.

The project will finance the updating, creation and implementation of protocols for monitoring and addressing the pandemic nationwide, in accordance with standards by international organizations, and the delivery of equipment and medical supplies around the country. Additionally, it will also boost Nicaragua's ability to collect and share information about the spread of the virus in the country.

In order to quickly meet the needs derived from the pandemic, the project will have operative support from two international agencies during the implementation stage, in accordance with the activities defined for each of them: the United Nations Office for Project Services and the Panamerican Health Organization. The project also calls for the hiring of an independent agency to verify the proper execution of the plan's work and investments.

About the IDB 

The Inter-American Development Bank is devoted to improving lives. Established in 1959, the IDB is a leading source of long-term financing for economic, social and institutional development in Latin America and the Caribbean. The IDB also conducts cutting-edge research and provides policy advice, technical assistance and training to public and private sector clients throughout the region.

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Leonardo Pinzón