Lucknow: The Uttar Pradesh government will sign an agreement with Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, which will provide technical, management and programme design support in the health sector.
Co-chairman of the foundation, Bill Gates, on Wednesday met UP Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav at his official residence here and offered his foundation's support to work in partnership on Health and Development issues in the state.
The MoU will be signed in two months. The foundation will provide support in the maternal, neonatal and child health-care, vaccination and other health and agriculture-related programmes. The decision in this regard was taken during the meeting.
The state government shall provide support as per sanctioned plans to achieve the objective and to scale up best approaches, an official release issued here said.
During the meeting, Akhilesh appreciated the works being done by the Gates Foundation in different districts of the state in the area of health through projects like Sure start, Manthan and Urban Health Initiative, the release said.
Yadav also apprised Gates of the efforts being started by his government to tackle the poor health indicators of mother mortality rates, infant mortality rate, low level of complete immunisation, high malnutrition among children, high fertility rate among others.
Apart from these issues, he also discussed with Gates the problems and challenges of vector borne diseases like Tubercolsis, Japanese encephalitis and acute encephalitis syndrome in certain regions of the state.
The release said Yadav suggested that the state should be supported in terms of technical knowledge in its efforts in tackling health related challenges by experimenting with new and innovative methods for effective behavior changes, delivery of services and organization and management of health systems, including telemedicine and capacity building of grassroots level health workers instead of providing monetary funding to the state.

The UP chief minister said the time has come for the foundation to consider a comprehensive and long term programme which addresses the maternal and child health issues in the state in a holistic manner.
The release said Gates assured him of full support by the foundation to develop innovative solution and to provide catalytic, technical, managerial and advocacy support to the government.
He also indicated foundation's keen interest to develop partnerships in some of the priority areas like maternal and neonatal health, nutrition, child health, particularly routine immunization coverage, introduction of new life saving vaccines and the consolidation of the gains against polio, family planning through increasing access to and uptake of modern contraceptives.
Gates also offered the state government to work in field of agriculture and also developing financial services for the poor by expanding digital payment systems into poor and rural communities, and connecting those payments to enhanced savings, credit and insurance services, the release added.


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