Aga Khan, AFD ink Sh700m infectious malady control bid

Aga Khan Health Services (East Africa) Regional CEO Sulaiman Shahabuddin and French Development Agency Country Director Stephanie Mouen display signed documents in the presence of Amin Kurji, Resident Representative of Aga Khan Development Network (L) and Frederic Clavier (R) French ambassador to Tanzania, in a group photo during the signing ceremony held at the newly-reopened Serena Hotel in Dar es Salaam. PHOTO | AGA KHAN HOSPITAL

Dar es Salaam. The Aga Khan Health Services in Tanzania and the French Development Agency (AFD) yesterday signed a €300,000 grant - roughly equivalent to over Sh700 million - to establish infectious diseases units in Dar es Salam and Mwanza.

The grant, according to a joint statement, is expected to enable the Aga Khan Hospital in Dar es Salaam to adequately respond to pandemics, such as Covid-19 including addressing issues pertaining to inadequate health infrastructure and capacity.

The initiative, which is undertaken by the Aga Khan Health Services, AFD and other partners, aims at creating an Infectious Diseases Unit that will complement the efforts of the government in reducing the transmission of infectious diseases and support the containment of any pandemics, to protect individuals’ risk of severe to critical illness.

“This grant of €300,000 is provided as part of the worldwide ‘Covid-19 Health in Common’ initiative launched by the French President and implemented by AFD in response to the worldwide public health crisis caused by the global pandemics,’’ a joint statement issued by Aga Khan and AFD said.

Speaking during the signing ceremony, the Regional Chief Executive Officer of Aga Khan Health Services (East Africa), Mr Sulaiman Shahabuddin, said, “This new unit at the Aga Khan Hospital - which is a zonal referral hospital - will leverage its technical and implementation capacity through existing clinical and support servicses delivery platforms to execute the planned care interventions for infectious disease patients.”

The Country Director of the French Development Agency in Tanzania, Ms Stéphanie Mouen, said “the initiative would demonstrate its responsiveness and efficiency in support of the development of our partners, in particular in East Africa.

“The strong and confident partnership to deliver desired success dates back more than 12 years ago when AFD and AKDN signed a partnership agreement to have one common ground: a genuine desire to invest in social uplifting and improving people’s quality of life,’’ said Ms Mouen.