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The Government of Kenya has signed a Ksh.33 billion grant agreement with the Global Fund to expand interventions for HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria in the country.

While signing the grant Tuesday at his office in Nairobi, Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich said the funds will largely enable the health sector to buy the necessary medicine and equipment required to bring down the rate of the three diseases.

The CS said that through the program, the government would provide ARV treatment to one million people, distribute seven million long lasting insecticide-treated nets to protect families from malaria and significantly scale-up multidrug-resistant treatment for Tuberculosis patients by 2017.

Rotich noted that the global fund will also support about 50 percent of malaria medicines used to treat malaria cases in the country alongside facilitating provision of ARVs to another 46 percent of patients infected with the virus.

He announced that the Global Fund has come up with new approach of financing the health sector under the “debt2health.”

This initiative (debt2health), reiterated Rotich, would see the conversion of debts into health financing for HIV, Malaria and TB diseases.

The CS said the government had in the fiscal year 2015/2016 set aside Ksh.2.6 billion to help bridge the financing gaps under the three diseases.

Health Cabinet Secretary James Macharia said through the global fund support, the HIV prevalence in the country has plummeted to five percent up from 13 percent.

Macharia added that an additional 600,000 HIV/AIDs patients will receive treatment, with such a program slated to run for two years.

He revealed that the Ministry of Health will on Thursday this week launch a Dashboard in support of UNAIDs.

Macharia further announced that the Ministry of Health is committed to continue working in partnership with Civil Society Principal Recipients, Development Partners and Stakeholders to ensure that grant activities reach Kenyans in need.

Head of Grant Management of the Global Fund Mark Edington said the partnership will achieve more impact in changing the lives of Kenyans, by contributing to their health and economic development.

“It is inspiring to see how the efforts made by Kenya by ensuring that the health sector is given priority and more Kenyans receive the necessary support,” added Edington.

The financial resources provided through the Global Fund came from many sources and partners, including the government of United States of America, Japan, the European Union, United Kingdom for International Development, UNAIDS and World Health Organization.

It will be managed by four organizations, namely the National Treasury, African Medical and Research Foundation, the Kenya Red cross Society and the Kenya AIDS NGOs Consortium.

Source: http://www.kbc.co.ke/kenya-signs-sh33-billion-grant-to-fund-health-sector/