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Brazil will improve the health of residents of São Bernardo do Campo municipality

An IDB loan of $80.05 million will help reduce mortality caused by chronic diseases

The InterAmerican Development Bank (IDB) has approved a loan of $80.05 million to improve the health of the population of São Bernardo do Campo (SBC), the fourth largest municipality in the Brazilian state of São Paulo, with a population of nearly 800,000.

The funding will allow for the expansion of access and improvements in the quality of intermediate and specialized care in the municipality, guaranteeing its integration with the primary level and thereby consolidating the health care model based on the Health Care Networks (RAS in Portuguese).

The project will help to reduce the morbidity and mortality caused by chronic diseases in the SBC municipality, as well as the number of premature deaths of people less than 60 years old due to problems with diabetes and cardiovascular events. It also will help to reduce the rate of preventable hospitalizations by strengthening the RAS. The project also will address another important area, assistance to mothers and infants, which is expected to reduce neonatal mortality in health care institutions.

The epidemiological situation in SBC is in line with national and state trends, characterized by a high prevalence of chronic diseases that have caused more than half of the deaths of municipality residents. Cardiovascular diseases caused one-third of the deaths in the municipality in 2012, and are also the principal cause of hospitalization among people under 60 years of age.

The majority of the financing is destined for the construction and equipment of a new emergency hospital; the construction of a new clinic and the equipment of three existing clinics; the rehabilitation of the infrastructure and purchase of equipment for the Hospital for Women. This will allow the Hospital for Women to handle all of the births in SBC, guaranteeing its self-sufficiency and the integrity of its care for mothers and infants. The hospital currently transfers 23 percent of its birth cases to the municipality of Diadems.

The project aims to consolidate the RAS, which promotes the continuous, integral and solution-based care of patients through the rational organization of the levels of care and with clear criteria for references and counter-references. It will also support the entire process of organization, validation and implementation of the guidelines for the treatment of the priority health issues in SBC: diabetes, hypertension and maternal-infant health.

Recent estimates indicate that the annual costs of treatment and loss of productivity in Brazil due to the five principal chronic diseases (cardiovascular, cancer, respiratory, diabetes and mental health) stands at US$72 billion.

The $80.05 million IDB loan comes from Ordinary Capital, has a 25-year term with a grace period of 5.5 years and an interest rate based on LIBOR. Another $80.05 million in local matching funds bring the total to $160.1 million. The project will be carried out by the São Bernardo do Campo municipality, with the support of the federal Brazilian government.