JICA prioritizes its health sector cooperation on creating an enabling environment for provision of critical health services to those who are most in need in developing countries. This includes building and strengthening sustainable health systems which can serve as essential platforms for achieving the health-related MDGs. 99% of global maternal and under-five mortality occurs in developing countries whereas more than 4 million deaths due to HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria occur annually. Building and strengthening systems that provide a comprehensive continuum of care for maternal and child health and control of infectious diseases remain key priorities for JICA’s cooperation with developing countries.
JICA also recognizes “human security”, which focuses on people and takes a holistic view of the various threats that people are facing, as a fundamental requirement for achieving the MDGs. As one of the vital approaches to enhance “human security”, JICA supports creation of an enabling environment for people in developing countries to enjoy health and overall well-being and building human resources for economic and social development.
One of the recommendations from the 4th Tokyo International Conference on African Development in Yokohama and the G8 Summit in Toyako in 2008 was to strengthen the existing regional networks of higher education institutions to provide access to health and medical education in areas with limited resources. JICA will provide a unique opportunity for strengthening regional capacity in the health sector by mobilising a strategic mix of bilateral and multilateral assistance and partnerships in accordance with the principles of HHA and the Communities of Practice.
JICA is implementing a 5-year regional project for HRH, a vital HSS building block, in partnership with AHLMN (African Health Leadership and Management Network), a consortium of universities and research institutions related to health in Africa. This project is providing a diverse group of policy makers and senior program managers from the governments and health institutions with training opportunities to improve health services, health financing and health information, aiming to build their capacity for leadership and management in support of national health systems in Sub-Sahara Africa.
At the regional level, JICA supports the HHA initiative and will continue to collaborate and coordinate with various partners, especially in view of contributing to the harmonisation and alignment of development assistance for increased aid effectiveness in the health sector.