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IDB supports program to reduce deaths caused by non-communicable chronic diseases in Argentina

Second operation to focus on primary care level, giving priority to sectors served only by public system

The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) has approved a $100 million loan to finance a program to help reduce deaths caused by non-communicable chronic diseases in Argentina, with a special focus on sectors of the population served only by the public system. 

This is the second operation under a multi-phase program designed to emphasize primary care level as a gateway to the healthcare system and boost citizens’ access to screening programs in order to categorize them by health risk level and increase access to timely treatment to those sectors of the population with moderate to high health risk. 

“Chronic diseases cause the loss of more than three-fourths of the healthy years of life in Argentina,” said Mario Sánchez, IDB project team leader. “Treating those affected or in risk of being affected by chronic diseases in a cost-effective fashion requires a primary care level with a high capacity of consultation resolution that is also well integrated with higher complexity levels. This is the challenge that the multiphase program faces.” 

The program will seek to improve the Primary Healthcare Centers efficiency, ensuring that these and other primary care service providers have at their disposal better clinical, computing and logistics equipment as well as adequate physical infrastructure. 

It will also train more than 4,000 members of the primary healthcare centers health teams; finance a new investments projects phase in order to provide at least 70 percent of the population with exclusive public coverage; and fund at least 40 new innovating projects in the competitive funding modality, making a specific call for proposals in locations with indigenous population. 

In addition, the program will finance the purchase of clinical diagnostic equipment for more than 1,100 primary healthcare centers. It will also help equip 1,300 new centers in order to improve pharmacological management, and 1,500 care facilities, medical warehouses, and public hospital pharmacies to improve medicine handling. Furthermore, it will help train more than 15,000 members of the primary care level medical teams in the rational use and care of medicines. 

The funds will also contribute to strengthen cancer care to support primary healthcare centers in their efforts to lead people in their areas of influence to conduct timely breast, cervical-uterine and colorectal cancer screenings. They will additionally help improve oncological clinical management throughout the entire care line. 

The $100 million IDB loan is for a 25-year term, with 4.5 years of grace and a LIBOR-based interest rate. It includes an additional $66 million in local counterpart funds.

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The Inter-American Development Bank is devoted to improving lives. Established in 1959, the IDB is a leading source oflong-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.