A World Bank team is currently in Honiara on an implementation support mission to provide technical support to the Ministry of Health and Medical Services.

The USD13 million project which comes to completion at the end of this year has supported various activities that aim to boost COVID-19 preparedness and response efforts, and to strengthen health systems for future outbreaks to improve the quality and accessibility of health care services in the country.

The project is financing expansion of national medical warehouse, installation of incinerators in several hospitals to enhance safe disposal of medical waste, construction of isolation units, and renovations at various health facilities across the country; beyond the immediate support provided to successfully combat the Covid-19 at the height of the pandemic.

Speaking at the opening of the mission, Permanent Secretary for the Ministry of Health and Medical Services Pauline McNeil says the project has certainly come a long way.

We started this journey over 3 years ago, in that period, amidst the Covid-19 pandemic, we have drawn a lot of lessons and best practices from the project that we have built on for improvements and capitalised on going forward to better our health systems and service delivery. We have proved ourselves and here we are in the last leg of our journey in the project, come December and we should complete the various projects that are currently underway.

I would like to acknowledge the technical guidance and leadership of World Bank Health Specialist and Task Team Leader Mr. Wayne Irava, and Senior Health Economist Mr. Netsanet Workie for navigating and ensuring the project kept moving forward. The ongoing partnership with the Ministry of Finance and Treasury right from day 1 of the project formulation to the ongoing support on implementation delivery of the project definitely adds to the success of the project to date. Without the joint collaborative efforts by all partners, we would not have come this far and I would like to say thank you, “said PS McNeil.

Meanwhile speaking on behalf of the World Bank Country Management Unit, Team leader Wayne Irava thanked PS McNeil for her leadership.

“We have such an engaging, active, integrated and hands on leadership in the Permanent Secretary of MHMS and on behalf of the County Management Unit, we thank you for your leadership, in ensuring things are moving along as expected. We have enjoyed seeing the progress of the project over the years and being the final year of the project, we want to make sure that we complete the project successfully and we look forward to continued partnership with the Solomon Islands Government in the health sector in the future,” said Mr Irava.

Speaking also at the opening, World Bank Senior Health Economist, Mr. Workie said he has always looked forward to missions for this particular project.

“This is a project with strong ownership and leadership from the Permanent Secretary McNeil and her Executive team. The project has demonstrated steady implementation progress over the last three years. .

I would also like to thank everyone who has led the way to bringing this partnership to the level where it is now”, said Mr Workie,

Meanwhile the mission will continue until next week and will include visits to various project sites. The project is expected to end in December with various project handovers expected as early as from June through to the end of this year.


Source: Press Release