Ministry of Health, Luxembourg and UNICEF, WHO and UNFPA Launch a New Phase of a Joint Programme to Improve Reproductive, Maternal, Newborn, Child and Adolescent Health in Lao PDR
This UN joint programme supported by the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg builds on the success of the previous phases of the programme and aims to improve the health of women, newborn, children and adolescents.
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Vientiane, 3 June 2022 – The Ministry of Health, the Government of Luxembourg and UNICEF, UNFPA and WHO have officially launched the third phase of the UN Joint Programme on Improving Reproductive, Maternal, Newborn, Child and Adolescent Health (RMNCAH) in Lao PDR.
The UN joint programme aims to improve the health of women, newborn, children and adolescents in Lao PDR by supporting the implementation of the updated National RMNCAH Strategy and action plan 2016-2025, which articulates the Government of Lao PDR’s vision for improving RMNCAH outcomes and the essential services to be delivered for this purpose. The UNJP is anchored within the 5th Indicative Cooperation Programme between the governments of Lao PDR and Luxembourg and contributes to the strategic objective to address poverty reduction and to contribute to the well-being of Lao citizens.
The third phase of the programme will run from 2022-2025, building on the results achieved during the programme’s previous phases which ran from 2011-2016 and 2017-2021.
“The Ministry of Health extends our thanks to the Government of Luxembourg and the UN partners for their continued support under this UN joint programme. Lao PDR has achieved significant progress during the second phase of the programme and we hope that the third phase of the programme will continue help us ensure that more mothers and children have access to quality healthcare services and have improved health outcomes,” said H.E. Phayvanh Keopaserth, Vice Minister of Health.
While overall great progress has been achieved in improving RMNCAH in Lao PDR, challenges remain in terms of the accessibility, equity and quality of healthcare services for mothers, children and young people. Furthermore, the COVID-19 pandemic has also caused a drop in the uptake of RMNCAH services as well.
The joint programme’s third phase will thus focus on strengthening the national capacity to implement the updated RMNCAH Strategy and Action Plan at the primary health care level, create an enabling environment for RMNCAH, increase capacity and knowledge of district and provincial health service providers and leverage synergies between the bi- and multilateral programmes supported by Luxembourg. Moreover, the third phase will also build upon some of the health innovations introduced during the COVID-19 pandemic to improve RMNCAH service delivery, including tele-health services.
“By the end of 2025, Luxembourg will have invested approximately 23 million euros over the last decade to improve RMNCAH in Lao PDR. I am confident that the UNJP, and thus the Luxembourg development cooperation, can help reducing maternal and child mortality substantially and improve the quality and service delivery of RMNCAH nationwide.” explained Mr. Sam Schreiner, Chargé d’Affaires of the Embassy of Luxembourg.
“The UN joint programme is a coherent programme of support provided by UNFPA, UNICEF and WHO with the support from Luxembourg for the implementation of the National RMNCAH Strategy and Action Plan 2016-2025. We thank the Government of Luxembourg for their consistent support and congratulate the Ministry of Health for their continued efforts in improving RMNCAH outcomes in the country. We look forward to working alongside you again in this new phase of the programme,” said Ms. Beate Dastel, UNICEF Representative a.i.
“Lao PDR's commitment to improving reproductive health, together with the contribution of Luxembourg has helped save and improve the lives of children, women and young people. WHO will continue to expand on the program's second-phase accomplishments by improving health care quality, particularly in the prevention and management of most common causes of maternal and child death; establishing a trusting relationship with beneficiaries to provide a complete continuum of care; and strengthening health systems for sustainable development,” said Dr Ying-Ru Lo, WHO Representative.
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