New Delhi: Piramal Foundation on Tuesday announced the setting up of a Tribal Health Collaborative for India in partnership with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The Collaborative will rest on two key pillars which will be working closely with the government, co-designing and co-implementing interventions for tribal communities.
Facilitating the implementation of key public health interventions in partnership with government functionaries across all levels, developing and enabling knowledge sharing across districts by working closely with the district administration, optimizing utilization of district-level funding for improved healthcare services, leveraging technology to ensure better governance and accountability and creating an integrated beneficiary-focused health technology platform for the delivery of affordable and accessible primary healthcare services for all are some of the key functions of the Collaborative.
The Tribal Health Collaborative will work closely with the Government of India by supplementing and complementing its efforts towards achieving Universal Health Coverage. It aims to build a high-performing, sustainable health ecosystem to address the needs of marginalized sections of society, particularly tribal communities, covering a population of more than 150 million across several districts, including Aspirational Districts in Central, Eastern, and North-Eastern India.
“We’re committed to supporting India’s vision to achieve its SDG 3 goals by 2030. Increased focus on rapidly transforming the lives of marginalised sections of society, will serve to accelerate impact at scale. We believe that partnerships with like-minded, values-based organizations such as Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, that seek to complement the Government’s efforts, will provide the much needed impetus,” said Ajay Piramal, Founder, Piramal Foundation.
The collaborative is slated to launch in early 2020 and additional partners are yet to be announced.
“India’s focus on health and nutrition, particularly for its most vulnerable, is critical to the country and the world’s efforts to meet SDG3. We look forward to continuing our partnership with the government in its work to improve the health and well-being of the world’s poorest,” said Bill Gates, Co-chair, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
India’s tribal population has poor health indicators when compared to the general population. The average maternal mortality ratein India is 130 deaths per 100,000 births, while tribal communities average 230 deaths per 100,000 births. Similarly, other health indicators such as infant mortality, child malnutrition rates, and incidence of malaria and tuberculosis are much higher among tribal communities than the general population.