UNDP and the Government of Norway today signed an agreement to support the second phase of the Norway India Partnership Agreement Initiative (NIPI). This five-year partnership aims to reduce maternal and infant mortality by strengthening capacities and improving access and utilization of public health services.

Eivind Homme, the Ambassador of Norway to India, emphasized that NIPI is a result of commitments by the Prime Ministers of Norway and India to reduce child mortality and achieve Millennium Development Goal 4. Partnering with UNDP will strengthen the component of institutional capacity building of NIPI. This will facilitate uptake of innovations and technologies for quality and equitably delivered health services for children in India. Norway is excited about the collaboration with the Government of India and the UNDP on this important initiative.
Lise Grande, United Nations Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative said, While India has made significant improvements in child survival rates in the under-five age-group, MDGs related to maternal and child mortality rates are unlikely to be met. The partnership with the Government of Norway represents an important initiative to support the government in improving administrative efficiency and state capacities aimed at delivering better healthcare services to mothers and children across the country.

According to the Agreement signed today, the project will be implemented in 13 NIPI focus districts in Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha and Rajasthan. Further, selected NIPI interventions will be demonstrated in several other states including Assam, Chhattisgarh, Haryana and Jharkhand. The first phase of NIPI focused on demonstrating innovative service delivery models at state and district levels. This is now being scaled up as part of the National Rural Health Mission of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

A key focus of the second phase of the initiative is to improve quality and delivery of National Rural Health Mission units at state and district levels and establishing state new born care resource centres. The partnership will use a mix of advisory services, technical assistance and project management services from UNDP.

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