“Poverty should not be a risk factor for ill health,” said Rabin Martin President & CEO Dr. Jeffrey L. Sturchio in his opening remarks at The Future of Health in Africa: Building Resilience to Achieve Universal Health Coverage. “Expanding universal health coverage (UHC), which protects people from catastrophic financial harm caused by high out-of-pocket health costs, while fostering greater access to quality care, needs to be a priority for Africa.”
Jeff moderated the high-level panel featuring H.E. Dr. Kesetebirhan Admasu, Federal Minister of Health, Ethiopia; Tarek Rabah, Area Vice-President, Middle East & Africa, AstraZeneca and Jemal Mohammed, Director, Leadership Management and Governance Project, Management Sciences for Health. Held on February 3, 2016, the panel was part of the Corporate Council on Africa’s 10th Biennial U.S. Africa Business Summit, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
The discussion focused on strengthening health infrastructures throughout Africa so that they are better able to address existing challenges such as maternal and child health, as well as unforeseen epidemics and noncommunicable diseases (NCDs). Mohammed addressed the importance of country leadership, and building the management and technical capacity across the health system. Rabah highlighted the role of the private sector in supporting countries to accelerate progress on issues such as NCDs. Minister Admasu spoke eloquently about Ethiopia’s achievements improving health and its approach to coordination and facilitation of cross-sector collaborations. He noted that donors, implementing agencies, academe and the private sector must all continue to drive efforts to build resilience and accelerate progress toward UHC.