Maseru, Lesotho, December 17, 2007—
The government of Lesotho today announced that a regional consortium led
by Netcare is the winning bidder for the country’s new National Referral
Hospital, which is expected to dramatically improve the level and quality
of the country’s publicly funded medical services. IFC, a member
of the World Bank Group, advised the government on the design and implementation
of the project, a public-private partnership for the new public hospital.
The new 390-bed public facility will replace the aging Queen Elizabeth
II Hospital, whose staff and patients face shortages of hot water, heat,
medical supplies, pharmaceuticals, trained staff, and regularly functioning
equipment. The project requires the operator to design, build, partially
finance, and fully operate the hospital, including the provision of clinical
services, for a period of 18 years.
Operating costs for the new hospital are roughly equivalent to those at
the existing facility. This means that patients will have access
to significantly better medical services at the same minimal charge they
The hospital project in Lesotho is the first of its kind in the region.
It includes the refurbishment and upgrade of three semi-urban filter clinics
that provide primary and secondary health care services to the public.
Together with the hospital, these clinics will operate as a regional health
network. The project also anticipates receiving a grant of $6.25
million from the Global Programme for Output-Based Aid and a partial risk
guarantee, both offered by the World Bank Group.
Honorable Timothy Thahane, Minister of Finance and Development Planning,
said, “We welcome this landmark project, which will benefit the health
of the nation and therefore strengthen the foundation of the nation’s
economy. We believe that the public-private partnership approach provides
the new hospital project with fiscal discipline, a focus on output, and
accountability for results.
Honorable Mphu Ramatlapeng, Minister of Health and Social Welfare, said,
“This project will greatly assist Lesotho in meeting the urgent challenges
we face in the health sector. Through this partnership, the government
ensures that reliable, affordable, and higher-quality medical care will
be provided by the private partner at the new National Referral Hospital.”
Bernard Sheahan, IFC Director of Advisory Services, said, “IFC is very
pleased to work with the government of Lesotho on this pioneering transaction.
This project provides a new model for governments and the private
sector to partner in providing health services for Sub-Saharan Africa and
other regions. The partnership structure enables the government to offer
higher-quality services more efficiently and within budget, while the private
sector has a new and robust market opportunity in health services. ”
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, fosters sustainable economic growth
in developing countries, helping to reduce poverty and improve people's
lives, by financing private sector investment, mobilizing private capital
in local and international financial markets, and providing advisory and
risk mitigation services to businesses and governments. Established in
1986, IFC's Advisory Services Department has completed over 165 transactions
in more than 60 countries and is the only multilateral institution to offer
direct advisory services to governments on implementing private-sector
participation transactions. In FY07, IFC committed $8.2 billion and mobilized
an additional $3.9 billion through loan participations and structured finance
for 299 investments in 69 developing countries. For more information, visit
About Netcare and the Consortium
Netcare is a leading private health care provider with operations in South
Africa and the United Kingdom. It leads the winning project consortium,
which includes South African and Lesotho firms and represents investors,
doctors, and other service providers that are participating in the new