Minister of Finance and National Planning, Situmbeko Musokotwane, says Zambia has received US$17 million grant for the upgrading health centres to district hospitals programme in the Copperbelt Province.
Speaking at the official signing ceremony of exchange of notes between Zambia and Japan in Copperbelt Province today, Mr Musokotwane said the US$17 million grant is an additional funding to the US$25 million grant which was earlier given to Zambia.
“This signing of the exchange of notes brings the total amount of grant to approximately US$42 million or approximately K840 million equivalent,” he said.
He stated that the additional grant by Japan will facilitate government to adequately cater for primary health care needs for the people of Chamboli in Kitwe and Mushili township in Ndola.
“Through this grant from Japan, the hospitals will be supplied with medical equipment such as X-ray, diagnostic equipment, ultrasonic diagnostic equipment, operating table, anesthesia machine with artificial respirator, mobile ventilators, hand washing machines, mobile ventilators electrocardiography, defibrillators and incubators,” he said.
Meanwhile, Japanese Ambassador to Zambia, Takeuchi Kazuyuki, said the programme aims at strengthening the Zambian health system.
Mr Kazuyuki said the programme will in particular enable the Zambian government to deal with infectious diseases and other serious illness in the long term.
“Once the project is completed, citizens of Ndola and Kitwe districts will directly benefit from the improvements of medical facilities,” he said.
Mr Kazuyuki further pointed out that fundamental improvements of health services in densely populated areas is another significant initiative by the Zambian government to effectively overcome the challenges arising from medical problems.