Mongolia: Strengthening COVID-19 Pandemic Response and Resilient Health Systems

Sovereign Project | 55305-001

The proposed knowledge and support technical assistance (TA) will support the Ministry of Health (MOH) of Mongolia to improve COVID-19 response and health system resilience through (i) health sector assessments for COVID-19 recovery, (ii) documentation of the COVID-19 response and related lessons, and (iii) strengthened capacity of government agencies involved in COVID-19 response.

Project Details

Project Name Strengthening COVID-19 Pandemic Response and Resilient Health Systems
Project Number 55305-001
Country / Economy Mongolia
Project Status Active
Project Type / Modality of Assistance Technical Assistance
Source of Funding / Amount
TA 6849-MON: Strengthening COVID-19 Pandemic Response and Resilient Health Systems in Mongolia
Technical Assistance Special Fund US$ 650,000.00
Strategic Agendas Inclusive economic growth
Regional integration
Drivers of Change Gender Equity and Mainstreaming
Governance and capacity development
Knowledge solutions
Partnerships
Private sector development
Sector / Subsector

Health / Disease control of communicable disease

Gender Equity and Mainstreaming Effective gender mainstreaming
Description

The proposed knowledge and support technical assistance (TA) will support the Ministry of Health (MOH) of Mongolia to improve COVID-19 response and health system resilience through (i) health sector assessments for COVID-19 recovery, (ii) documentation of the COVID-19 response and related lessons, and (iii) strengthened capacity of government agencies involved in COVID-19 response.

The TA is aligned with the Asian Development Bank's (ADB) country partnership strategy for Mongolia, 2021-2024; Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation Program Health Strategy 2030; and the ADB Strategy 2030 operational priorities on addressing remaining poverty and reducing inequalities, accelerating progress in gender equality, strengthening governance and institutional capacity, and fostering regional cooperation and integration. The TA is included in the country operations business plan for Mongolia, 2021; and is also aligned with Mongolia's State Policy on Health, 2017-2026, which reaffirms sustained commitment toward improving health services for the population.

Project Rationale and Linkage to Country/Regional Strategy

Mongolia''s COVID-19 situation and response. It is estimated that at least 60% of Mongolia's population (totaling 1.98 million people) are at high risk of severe disease due to COVID-19. Of these, about 522,428 people are particularly vulnerable (i.e., frontline medical workers, emergency management staff, police and border military, state inspectors, the elderly, and individuals with comorbidities). The Government of Mongolia implemented strict measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19, with the first case of community transmission reported on 10 November 2020. The National Deployment and Vaccination Plan against COVID-19 is an integral part of Mongolia's overall national COVID-19 pandemic planning and prioritizes target groups and effective strategies for vaccination. Since the start of Mongolia's COVID-19 vaccination program on 23 February 2021, Mongolia has achieved 69.4% COVID-19 vaccination coverage (one or two doses), and its high-risk groups have been immunized.

While the COVID-19 vaccination program has been effective, Mongolia is still considered high risk by the World Health Organization (WHO), which in a 2017 evaluation, concluded that Mongolia's core capacities for pandemic preparedness are limited, and that it remains vulnerable to emerging diseases and public health emergencies, with challenges in the readiness of the national systems to respond to large-scale, complex events in an effective and coordinated way. Health services are overwhelmed with hospital beds; and intensive care unit and human resources are stretched beyond capacity. At the same time, Mongolia does not have laboratory facilities and capacity to determine variants, and specimens must be sent to neighboring countries for testing. Significant challenges persist and require continual commitment and support to prevent further outbreaks and a rise in cases.

Health sector constraints. Systemic issues that exist across the health sector in Mongolia have led to challenges in COVID-19 pandemic treatment outcomes and management. Responsible government agencies lack training on cross-sector pandemic coordination and data sharing across ministries such as MOH, the National Emergency Management Agency, and the General Agency for Specialized Inspection. The pandemic has also highlighted governance, sustainability, and financing constraints in the health sector. Inefficiencies in hospital management and poor referral linkages between primary, secondary, and tertiary levels of care are also major constraints. Systemic health system issues have limited effective and efficient hospital treatment outcomes as the COVID-19 pandemic persists.

Health systems globally have experienced major setbacks and challenges in their ability to prepare and respond to the pandemic; this is exacerbated in countries such as Mongolia, where health sector challenges go beyond the pandemic and highlight a need for a more responsive, efficient, and sustainable health system to manage population health. Services such as routine immunization for children and reproductive health services for women have been affected as resources have shifted to address the pandemic. Women have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic, as 82% of the health workforce is female. The crisis has also increased gender-based violence, as evidenced by the rise in hotline calls and the use of shelters by women. The TA assessments with gender focus will help to evaluate health system inefficiencies and propose policy actions to address those with gender-responsive policy measures.

Impact

A more responsive, efficient, and sustainable health system achieved

Project Outcome
Description of Outcome

Policies on COVID-19 response and public health preparedness strengthened

Progress Toward Outcome The TA is on its early stage of implementation.
Implementation Progress
Description of Project Outputs

Resilient health systems for COVID-19 recovery assessed

COVID-19 response and lessons documented

Knowledge and skills of government agencies involved in COVID-19 response strengthened

Status of Implementation Progress (Outputs, Activities, and Issues) Recruitment of 5 individual consultants ongoing._Three experts have been mobilized: gender specialist; senior health specialist, and health system specialist.
Geographical Location Nation-wide
Summary of Environmental and Social Aspects
Environmental Aspects
Involuntary Resettlement
Indigenous Peoples
Stakeholder Communication, Participation, and Consultation
During Project Design
During Project Implementation
Business Opportunities
Consulting Services ADB will engage the consultants following the ADB Procurement Policy (2017, as amended from time to time) and its associated procurement staff instructions.
Responsible ADB Officer Nigam, Jayati
Responsible ADB Department East Asia Department
Responsible ADB Division Urban and Social Sectors Division, EARD
Executing Agencies
Ministry of Health (formerly Ministry of Health and Sports)
Timetable
Concept Clearance 21 Oct 2021
Fact Finding -
MRM -
Approval 29 Nov 2021
Last Review Mission -
Last PDS Update 30 Sep 2022

TA 6849-MON

Milestones
Approval Signing Date Effectivity Date Closing
Original Revised Actual
29 Nov 2021 28 Dec 2021 28 Dec 2021 30 Nov 2023 - -
Financing Plan/TA Utilization Cumulative Disbursements
ADB Cofinancing Counterpart Total Date Amount
Gov Beneficiaries Project Sponsor Others
650,000.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 650,000.00 23 Sep 2022 0.00

Project Data Sheets (PDS) contain summary information on the project or program. Because the PDS is a work in progress, some information may not be included in its initial version but will be added as it becomes available. Information about proposed projects is tentative and indicative.

The Access to Information Policy (AIP) recognizes that transparency and accountability are essential to development effectiveness. It establishes the disclosure requirements for documents and information ADB produces or requires to be produced.

The Accountability Mechanism provides a forum where people adversely affected by ADB-assisted projects can voice and seek solutions to their problems and report alleged noncompliance of ADB's operational policies and procedures.

In preparing any country program or strategy, financing any project, or by making any designation of, or reference to, a particular territory or geographic area in this document, the Asian Development Bank does not intend to make any judgments as to the legal or other status of any territory or area.


Safeguard Documents See also: Safeguards
Safeguard documents provided at the time of project/facility approval may also be found in the list of linked documents provided with the Report and Recommendation of the President.

None currently available.


Evaluation Documents See also: Independent Evaluation

None currently available.


Related Publications

None currently available.


The Access to Information Policy (AIP) establishes the disclosure requirements for documents and information ADB produces or requires to be produced in its operations to facilitate stakeholder participation in ADB's decision-making. For more information, refer to the Safeguard Policy Statement, Operations Manual F1, and Operations Manual L3.

Requests for information may also be directed to the InfoUnit.

Tenders

Tender Title Type Status Posting Date Deadline
Infectious disease specialist Individual - Consulting Closed 01 Jun 2022 07 Jun 2022
Hospital services specialist Individual - Consulting Closed 09 Feb 2022 15 Feb 2022
Gender specialist Individual - Consulting Closed 09 Feb 2022 15 Feb 2022
National Health Systems Specialist Individual - Consulting Closed 25 Jan 2022 31 Jan 2022
Project and Training coordinator Individual - Consulting Closed 25 Jan 2022 31 Jan 2022
Public−private partnership specialist Individual - Consulting Closed 25 Jan 2022 31 Jan 2022
Senior health specialist and team leader Individual - Consulting Closed 25 Jan 2022 31 Jan 2022
International Health Economist Individual - Consulting Closed 25 Jan 2022 31 Jan 2022

Contracts Awarded

No contracts awarded for this project were found


Procurement Plan

None currently available.