The World-Bank-funded Lebanon Health Resilience Project (LHRC) will extend support for lifesaving drugs and coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccines for students and teachers, World Bank Regional Director for the Middle East Saroj Kumar Jha announced on Friday.
The agreement for this move was reached during a meeting between caretaker Health Minister Hamad Hasan and Jha on Friday and was deemed “good” by the latter.
The LHRP is an active $120-million project that aims at increasing access to quality healthcare services to vulnerable Lebanese and Syrians in Lebanon, as well as to strengthen the Lebanese government’s capacity to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The project focuses on supporting and strengthening the resilience and capacity of both primary and hospital-level public health institutions in the country.
Due to the prevailing economic crisis, many drugs, including essential medications used in the treatment of cancer and other chronic conditions, have completely disappeared from the Lebanese market or become scarce and expensive.
The crisis has also caused a dangerous shortage of medical equipment, further undermining a weakened healthcare sector that is crumbling under the collective weight of the pandemic, the economic meltdown, the crises, and the resulting mass migration of doctors and nurses.