ADB OKs $450-M loan to boost PH Universal Healthcare Program

By Anna Leah Gonzales

December 6, 2023, 7:50 pm

MANILA – The Asian Development Bank (ADB) on Wednesday approved a USD450-million policy-based loan to help the Philippines strengthen its health policy reforms.

In a statement, the ADB said the amount will also be used to further improve Filipinos’ access to medicines and health services, sustain universal health care (UHC) coverage, and increase financing for UHC.

The Build Universal Health Care Program (Subprogram 2) will help scale up the government’s efforts to implement key reforms under the UHC Act of 2019.

These include sustainable financing for UHC, the integrated delivery of quality health services, and the interoperability of health information systems.

The new program builds on previous ADB support provided under Subprogram 1 and technical assistance financed by the Japan Fund for Prosperous and Resilient Asia and the Pacific approved in November 2021.

“The Build UHC Program is part of ADB’s commitment to deliver long-term support to the country to ensure all Filipinos have equitable access to quality health services without exhausting their finances,” said ADB Principal Health Specialist Eduardo Banzon.

“The program will also help ensure the reforms are responsive to gender-specific health issues and the impacts of climate change on people’s health and well-being,” added Banzon. (PNA)