The World Bank today approved a $ 117.70 million credit to improve quality of and access to health services in Tamil Nadu.

The latest World Bank financial assistance is in addition to the Tamil Nadu Health Systems Project that was approved on December 16, 2004 with an IDA (International Development Association) credit amount of $ 110.83 million, a media release said.

“Tamil Nadu has made impressive progress in improving maternal and child health, and further improvements would be achieved by improvement in the overall quality of care, particularly for provision of comprehensive emergency obstetric and neonatal care,” said Preeti Kudesia, World Bank Sr Public Health specialist and project team leader.

“The additional funding will support the continuation of successful activities, and will particularly focus on improving the quality of health care provision. The project will also enhance access to and utilization of health services by the state’s poor, remote, and tribal populations,” Mr. Kudesia said.

The World bank said over the past four years, the project has helped establish 80 Comprehensive Emergency Obstetrics and Neonatal Centres throughout the State, leading to improved access and quality of care for pregnant women and infants.

It has also provided 385 ambulances, which have strengthened the Emergency Transport Services in rural areas in Tamil Nadu.

Health services in tribal areas of the state have also improved through mobile outreach services and supporting sickle cell anaemia screening interventions and patient counselling services.

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