GAVI Alliance (Geneva)

22 November 2012

Sierra Leone: Gavi Reviews Health System Support to Sierra Leone

press release

In-depth review of health system strengthening support launched.

The GAVI Alliance has recently discovered indications of misuse in its health system strengthening (HSS) cash support to Sierra Leone, following a Financial Management Assessment conducted by the GAVI Secretariat's Transparency and Accountability team.

Given these concerns, GAVI subsequently launched an in-depth review of HSS support to the country for the period 2008-2009 and is discussing preliminary findings with the Government of Sierra Leone. Further information on any misused amounts will be published once the review is completed.

The Alliance takes all suspected and confirmed cases of misuse of funds very seriously. When GAVI suspects misuse of a grant, all cash disbursements to the relevant programme are halted.

As a result of this discovery, GAVI is holding back payment of the last undisbursed tranche of HSS support to Sierra Leone - totalling approximately US$ 530,000 - and no new HSS funding will be disbursed to the country until the matter is resolved. GAVI support for vaccines, however, remains uninterrupted to ensure that Sierra Leonean children continue to benefit from life-saving immunisation.

GAVI's HSS support contributes to resolving major constraints to immunisation delivery; increases equity in access to services and strengthens civil society engagement in the health sector.

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