NEW DELHI, May 28: The Asian Development Bank (ADB) today said it will lend $300 million to support India's National Urban Health Mission (NUHM).
"India has made good progress toward improving health services in rural areas, but over 77 million urban poor and vulnerable still have limited access to basic health services such as child immunisation. The NUHM is meant to change that," ADB Director (South Asia Human and Social Development Division) Sungsup Ra said.
The government launched NUHM in May 2013 to strengthen health service delivery in urban areas.
"The ADB has approved a $300 million loan to support India's NUHM ," an ADB statement said.
The funds will be disbursed over next three years , subject to achievement of results, which include better health facilities and higher childhood immunisation rates.
The loan period is 25 years, with a grace period of 5 years.
The loan will help strengthen the networks of primary health facilities in urban areas and introduce a quality assurance mechanism for them, ADB said.
India is urbanising rapidly. This has caused massive growth in the number of urban poor, ADB said, adding that vulnerable segment of the population cannot afford the private health providers.
The loan will be complemented by $2 million in technical assistance provided by the Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction and administered by ADB to strengthen programme implementation in selected states.
The NUHM aims to strengthen health systems across cities and towns to deliver quality health services for all, targeting the poor and vulnerable.