Tunis, 22 July 2008 - The Board of Directors of the African Development Bank (AfDB) on Tuesday in Tunis approved an investment of US$ 20 million in Equity Vehicle for Health in Africa (EVHA). EVHA is an investment vehicle and institutional capacity building project focused on providing risk capital and technical assistance to Africa’s under-served small and medium-sized private healthcare enterprises.
EVHA is a pan-African fund that will target small-to-medium sized private healthcare enterprises and provide value-added services to help them prosper. Investments are expected to range from US$ 500,000 and US$ 5 million and will target existing and Greenfield investments in the following four health sub-sectors.
These include health service providers like clinics, private hospitals, diagnostic centers, and laboratories; risk-pooling and healthcare financing institutions such as health maintenance organizations and health insurance companies, pharmaceutical manufacturing and supply distribution chains and healthcare education. Investments will be market-driven across the continent.
EVHA is part of a broader program to improve the legal and regulatory framework for private healthcare as well as foster public-private partnerships in the African healthcare sector.
The private sector is surprisingly large and already plays an important role in Africa’s healthcare sector. Harnessed properly, the private sector can complement government efforts to address the health care needs of all segments of the population in Sub-Sahara Africa. The proposal is in line with the African Development Bank’s updated Private Sector Strategy and its Health Strategy objectives designed to improve the health and social infrastructure in African countries.
EVHA is a novel concept that uses market instruments to enhance the efficiency and quality of health care in Africa. The AfDB is one of the lead investors and had been involved in the project conceptualization and design. Through this project the AfDB will pursue its strategy of collaboration with key development partners to leverage synergies in the social domains including the health sector.