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
NCDs: An Urgent Call for Primary Health Care System Strengthening in Sub-Saharan Africa
October 21st, 3:30pm – 5:00pm EAT
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
“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.”
“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.”
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
“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.”
“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.”
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
“The challenges that we face in the health sector can be turned into opportunities for investment.”
“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.
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
“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.”
“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.”