2021 Webinar Series

Investing in Africa’s healthcare sector is not an option – it is a must. It is an opportunity to accelerate economic development and growth, contribute to saving millions of lives and preventing life-long disabilities, and move countries closer to achieving objectives of national poverty reduction strategies and the Sustainable Development Goals.

Towards Sustainable Healthcare Systems in Africa

As Africa adapts to a new normal, partnerships in over-stretched health systems will continue to play an important role.While the current pandemic has put significant stress on the healthcare systems of the continent, it has also provided the base for building stronger and more resilient health systems. Participation by organisations, both non-profit and for-profit businesses, is vital in creating sustainable solutions to quality healthcare delivery. Private investors are already directing efforts to innovate the areas of disease management, digital health, human resources, financing, manufacturing and supply chain. The AHBS webinar series for 2021 consists of seven sessions discussing key areas that are at the centre of change.

Webinar Series Calendar

The power of partnerships: Development partners value creation in the healthcare sector

There are a lot of challenges facing partnerships, and in particular public-private partnerships (PPPs) in Africa’s healthcare space. In most cases, donor and government interests are not aligned and this brings about multiplicity of donor interests. Generally, there is a lack of a holistic view of what is happening in terms of different partnerships and available resources.
June 24th, 3:30pm – 5:00pm EAT
Session Speakers
“Nothing can happen if you want to do it by yourself, especially in health. I strongly believe that there is need to put diplomacy of health in place.”
Dr. Karim Bendhaou
Head of Africa Bureau, MERCK
“The only solution to current and longterm health problems is partnerships.”
Mrs. Ishrat Z. Husain
Senior Health Advisor, Africa Bureau, USAID

The future of health: Unlocking the potential of Artificial Intelligence for healthcare in Africa

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is defined as: “the imitation of human acumen in machines that are typically programmed to imitate human actions.” It is interdisciplinary science with numerous approaches of machine learning in the technology industry. In the recent past, AI has moved from being a futuristic promise into a reference point for innovation and is making it’s way out of research laboratories in Africa.
May 13th, 3:30pm – 5:00pm EAT
Session Speakers
“Africa has an opportunity to leapfrog the world with AI in healthcare because one of the things we produce so well is data. Africa has little jurisdiction and over compliance problems as compared to other parts of the world, problems which sometimes stifle innovations.”
Mr. John Kamara
Entrepreneur, AfyaRekod and Adalabs
“When we talk about digital health and it's position in making healthcare services more sustainable, we have to look at it in terms of the benefits for the whole tripartite pyramid, including the provider, payer and patient.”
Dr. Joanne R. Korir
Dr. Joanne R. Korir
Senior Health Advisor, Africa Bureau, USAID

Africa’s readiness for the COVID-19 vaccination drive

Africa is yet to secure adequate volumes of the vaccine. As of 8th April 2021, Africa has administered vaccines to approximately 0.65% of the entire population and the African Union has a goal of vaccinating 60%. So Africa is behind, but things are moving in the right direction. The COVID-19 Vaccine Global Access Facility (COVAX) is complementing the AU’s work with the goal of vaccinating 20% of the world’s population. This means there is a gap of 40% that the AU needs to fill. To this end, they are looking for further funding and support.
April 8th, 3:30pm – 5:00pm EAT
Session Speakers
“We need to think out of the box. We aren’t going to jump right on existing facilities but be innovative in ensuring that we provide an enabling environment to rollout the COVID-19 vaccines.”
Nicaise Ndembi
Dr. Nicaise Ndembi
Senior Science Advisor, Africa CDC
“We need to ensure that countries have systems in place that they’ve never needed before, from human resources to physical infrastructure to know-how and expertise. To ensure this, there is also a need for sufficient funding.”
Tara Prasad
Ms. Tara Prasad
Senior Manager - ACT-A/COVAX Coordination Secretariat for Supply for the UNICEF Supply Division

Health Business Investment in Africa

There are many barriers to providing adequate healthcare in Africa, but many of them can be addressed through increased investment in the sector. Recent estimates show that the African health sector will be worth around $259 billion by 2030, with the potential to create over 16 million jobs across the continent. There is great potential in the health sector, especially with an enabling environment for private sector engagement and participation.
March 25th, 3:30pm – 5:00pm EAT
Session Speakers
“The challenges that we face in the health sector can be turned into opportunities for investment.”
Dr. Babatunde Omilola
Manager Public Health, Security and Nutrition Division, Africa Development Bank
“It is important for private sector health companies to form partnerships with banks, leasing companies and other financiers to mitigate some of the risks that they find in the healthcare investment space.
Jennifer Kinyoe
Ms. Jennifer Kinyoe
Country Manager, GE Healthcare East Africa

One year on: What have we learned since news of COVID-19 first broke?

Addressing the COVID-19 pandemic has forced Africa to view health from a new perspective. Rather than representing a single, isolated issue, health is now seen as vital and integrated with every other aspect of governments and economies. This highlights the need for a multi-sectoral approach in preventing and addressing future pandemics. Public-private action is essential because both sectors serve the same population and actions on both sides are impacting the other.
February 25th, 3:30pm – 5:00pm EAT
Session Speakers
“There is a need for us to be more systems focused in our thinking, rather than just healthcare focused in our thinking, because there are many aspects of our economies that impact the health sector.”
Mercy Mwangangi
Dr. Mercy Mwangangi
Chief Administrative Secretary, Ministry of Health, Kenya
“What will it take to win the battle against COVID19? (1) Personal discipline by following public health measures (2) Solidarity as a continent (3) Building our continental & national institutions so that they can build resilient health systems.”
ahmed Ogwell Ouma
Dr. Ahmed Ogwell
Deputy Director, Africa CDC