May 15, 2010

Gates Foundation, Bihar ink deal for better health

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has signed a Memorandum of Cooperation (MoC) with the Government of Bihar to ensure better delivery of medicare.

With the signing of this MoC, the foundation will extend aid to various health projects in selection districts of the state.

The memorandum was signed in the presence of Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar. "The Gates Foundation has its biggest focus on improving health. So, as we watched over the last few years, Bihar really makes a priority to improve health, including things like immunisation. We have been very impressed. So, during my last visit, the Chief Minister and I had a conversation that kicked off the discussions that led to today's Memorandum of Co-operation," said Bill Gates.

The memorandum aims to improve and increase the availability, quality and utilisation of health-care facilities and services.

This is an initiative to reduce maternal mortality rate (MMR) and infant mortality rate in Bihar.

Various health-related projects including eradication of tuberculosis, pneumonia, diarrhoea using will see support of the Gates Foundation.

"There will be intervention by the foundation in eight districts, to scale up and improve the work that has already been started in the state. The projects in which they will support in these eight districts include work in the fields of pneumonia, diarrhoea, Kalaazar and tuberculosis," said Nitish Kumar.

During the visit, Gates interacted with the locals and generated awareness on various health-related measures.

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, regarded as one of the biggest charitable trusts in the world, is expected to collaborate with the Rajiv Gandhi Charitable Trust for running various welfare programmes at several places in India.

Link: Original Article

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