Aga Khan Hospitals Receive Grant From Proparco to Boost Health Care Access

Mr. Sulaiman Shahabuddin (2nd left), President, Aga Khan University and Her Excellency Ambassador Aline Kuster-Ménager (2nd right), French Ambassador to Kenya display the Ksh. 290 million signed grant documents. The grant will enable Aga Khan hospitals in East Africa to increase access to health care services by boosting oxygen supply and supporting needy patients with quality care. Accompanying them is Mr. Moyez Alibhai (left), Board Chair, Aga Khan Health Services, Kenya and Mr. Jean Benoit Du Chalard (right), Regional Head AFD, East Africa.

The Aga Khan hospitals in East Africa have received a Ksh. 290 million (EUR 2.3 million) grant from Proparco (the private sector financing arm of AFD Group, the French Development Agency) to increase access to health care services by boosting oxygen supply and supporting needy patients with quality care.

The grant will benefit the Aga Khan University Hospital, Nairobi and the Aga Khan Hospitals in Mombasa, Kisumu and Dar-es-Salaam including 94 outreach and medical centres of the Aga Khan Health Services in Kenya and Tanzania.

The project will provide financial support to scale up oxygen supply and critical care capacity in Mombasa and Kisumu counties. It will also support the welfare funds run by the Aga Khan hospitals and outreach and medical centres that enables qualifying needy patients access to quality care at no cost.

This grant was made possible by funds allocated to Proparco by the French Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs. It contributes to AFD Group’s Health in Common initiative designed to help health systems in developing and emerging countries better cope with the Covid-19 crisis. The Health in Common initiative is closely linked to the WHO-led multilateral ACT-A response and is implemented in a #TeamEurope approach.

“Cooperation in the health sector is a strong pillar of the French-Kenyan relations and a key component of the partnership between European and African countries, which will be celebrated this week at the European Union-African Union Summit. I am very happy to witness today yet another example of the fruitful cooperation between the AFD Group and the Aga Khan Development Network to build more inclusive and resilient health systems in Kenya and Tanzania” said Aline Kuster-Ménager, French Ambassador to Kenya.

“Through a shared commitment to improve access to quality healthcare, AFD Group and the Aga Khan Development Network have grown to become strong, like-minded partners. The €2.3 million subsidy granted today to the Aga Khan hospitals and outreach centres in East Africa further demonstrates our determination to help both health systems and patients tackle the covid-19 crisis,” said Jean-Benoît du Chalard, Proparco’s Regional Director for Eastern Africa.

While speaking during the signing ceremony, Aga Khan University President Sulaiman Shahabuddin said:

“Since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, The Aga Khan Hospitals in East Africa have been at the forefront of the response, playing a primary role in supporting the testing, treatment and prevention of Covid-19, while also ensuring that our regular patients receive their routine care in a safe manner. The pandemic has however strained the healthcare infrastructure and especially critical care units and oxygen supply. This grant will go a long way in building capacity in these two areas and enable us to provide timely and quality care.

Creating access to care is an important mission and the patient welfare funds received through this grant will enable patients who cannot afford the cost of care to access health services. We are delighted with this outcome.”

The Aga Khan Development Network and AFD Group have built a strong relationship over the past 15 years through multiple joint operations in the health sector. For example, AFD granted a $19.5 million loan in 2017 to extend and strengthen the Aga Khan Hospitals in Mombasa and Kisumu as well as a €10 million grant in 2019 to develop and support an integrated comprehensive cancer programme in Tanzania through a public-private initiative between AKDN, the Government of Tanzania and the French Institut Curie.

The Aga Khan Fund for Economic Development has also been a partner of Proparco since 1990.