In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the GOT has requested the WB to trigger the CERC under TCRTP and allocate approximately US$ 2.5 million from unallocated funds in the project to strengthen Tonga’s health systems.
The specific activities to be financed by the proceeds allocated to the CERC are event and demand driven and the following eligible activities are coordinated and implemented in accordance with WB and the Tonga National Health Strategic Plan and the COVID 19 National Action Plan (MOH, 2020). The EAP has the following objectives:
- Leveraging international coordination to deliver strategic, technical, and operational support through existing mechanisms and partnerships
- Scaling up country preparedness and response operations to:
- Keep Tonga COVID-19 free for as long as possible
- Contain and slow down the spread of COVID -19
- Minimise the adverse health, wellbeing and social impacts of COVID-19
- Reduce the number of deaths
- Reduce the economic and social disruption associated with the outbreak.
Key Activities and estimated budget for the CERC and for this ESMF are detailed in Annex 1. The list of activities is in line with Tonga’s strategic preparedness and response plan (MOH, 2020) guiding the implementation phases, which in turn are determined by the changing level of threats and incident of infection spreading.