Experts Call for Innovations to Aid Africa’s Healthcare

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Local technologies and innovations can transform healthcare delivery in Africa, health experts and biomedical researchers have told a conference.

The 50 health experts at the conference, while highlighting existing setbacks, reached consensus to prioritise locally generated high-impact technologies to transform Africa’s healthcare delivery.

The experts discussed challenges and the potential for using technologies for controlling diseases, including Ebola during the three-day conference held in Ethiopia last month (20-22 January). The conference, organised by Ethiopia-headquartered African Network for Drugs and Diagnostics Innovation (ANDI), UNICEF and other partners, identified challenges that impede local innovations from evolving to transform Africa’s healthcare system.

Joseph Bonney, a researcher at Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research in Ghana and Misaki Wayengera, a scientist at Uganda’s Makerere University said attempts by African scientists to develop experimental drugs, vaccines and diagnostic devices for Ebola and other diseases have been hampered by shortage of funding, laboratory facilities and capacity-related issues.

ANDI board vice-chairman Tshinko B. Illunga, a public health specialist, told SciDev.Net that despite promising research and innovations made by African researchers, creating a sustainable platform for health innovations to address Africa’s health needs, including the control of Ebola virus, leaves much to be desired.

Source: Science and Development Network (link opens in a new window)

Health Care