The World Bank is providing US$100 million to Ghana to assist the country in tackling the COVID-19 pandemic. This US$100 million will be made available to the government and the people of Ghana as short, medium and long-term support, a press release from the bank said.

This financing package includes US$35 million in emergency support to help the country provide improved response systems. Under this emergency package the World Bank will support the government to help prevent, detect, and respond to the COVID-19 pandemic through the Ghana Emergency Preparedness and Response Project (EPRP).

The EPRP will help strengthen Ghana’s National Laboratories by providing robust systems for the early detection of COVID-19 cases and providing real time disease surveillance and reporting systems of outbreaks. It will also improve response systems by providing social and financial support and free health services to COVID-19 patients and families who are isolated or quarantined.

Finally, the project will focus on risk communications and community engagement for increased awareness and compliance with prevention measures engaging the Ministry of Health, Ghana Health Service, Ministry of Information and other agencies.

“We are working with the government through this fast track facility to support the country’s efforts to slow transmission, prevent outbreaks and provide better-quality care for all patients, especially the seriously ill,” said World Bank Country Director, Pierre Laporte. “It’s crucial that we all work together with other partners to help minimize the negative impact of the pandemic on health systems, social services and economic activities.”

The World Bank Group is rolling out a US$14 billion fast-track package to strengthen the COVID-19 response in developing countries and shorten the time to recovery. The immediate response includes financing, policy advice and technical assistance to help countries cope with the health and economic impacts of the pandemic.