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Africa's Public Procurement & Entrepreneurship Research Initiative – APPERI

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Malaria

Liberia: President Sirleaf Raps On Progress Against Malaria


AllAfrica

October 1, 2012

President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has disclosed that there has been unprecedented success in scaling up malaria control, with a 33 percent decrease in malaria deaths in Africa over the last decade.President Sirleaf said however, the current global funding crisis threatens this progress and the achievement of the health MDGs – Goals 4, 5 and 6.

“Our national malaria control programs have completed comprehensive programmatic and financial gap analyses, detailing a $3.7 billion gap in the finances needed to sustain universal coverage of essential malaria interventions to the end of 2015 in Africa,” President Sirleaf said.

“I speak on behalf of the 44 ALMA Heads of State and Government. As the world begins discussions on the post-2015 development framework, African leaders understand that we have a three-year window to leverage every resource to ensure that we achieve the health goals for our people and to develop plans to sustain the gains,” she said.

President Sirleaf said in the coming months, the High-Level Panel, which she has the honor to co-Chair with British Prime Minister David Cameron and Indonesian President Susilo Yudhoyono, will lay the groundwork for a global post-2015 agenda with shared responsibilities for all countries and with the fight against poverty and for sustainable development at its core.

“This new agenda must build on the successes that will have been achieved during the MDG era,” she added.

President Sirleaf who is Chairman of the African Leaders Malaria Alliance (ALMA) was speaking at the United Nations Secretary General‘s Every Woman Every Child Dinner held at the Museum of Modern Art in New York recently.

President Sirleaf said over the summer, African leaders rallied and decided that they will be at the forefront of The Big Push to 2015.

In this vein, President Sirleaf said African leaders have decided that it was important to call upon their bilateral, private sector, NGO, CBO, foundation and Development Bank partners to keep their commitments to global health. “They have done a great job thus far, but more is needed because the whole world benefits when our people thrive,” she averred.

She said African leaders have also decided to ensure value for money across all aspects of prevention and treatment which means full transparency and accountability and realizing efficiencies wherever they can be found.

She said ALMA has worked, over the past years with the Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI) to model sustained financing plans and to look at financial management best practices.

“We support the roll-out of procurement efficiencies, such as pooled procurement, standardization of net specifications and local manufacture of anti-malarial commodities. By doing so, we can save hundreds of millions of dollars. Uganda, for example, saved $17 million by standardizing mosquito net specifications and opting for pooled procurement,” the Liberian leader said.

She said African leaders have also decided to increase domestic resources from the public and private sectors, key elements of The Big Push to 2015 and beyond while committing to allocate 15 percent of public sector funds to health…Read more.

SA pioneers malaria breakthrough


Southern Times

By Gabriel Manyati

August 31, 2012

Johannesburg – A drug that has the potential to treat malaria has been pioneered by researchers at the University of Cape Town (UCT) in South Africa.

It is the first time a potential cure has been developed on African soil.

New malaria drugs are urgently needed, as there is there is growing resistance to existing treatments and no effective vaccine to protect people from infection.

Malaria is a huge killer in many other parts of the continent: one in four child deaths in Africa south of the Sahara is due to malaria; and the disease reduces the region’s GDP by an estimated US$12 billion a year.

In South Africa, malaria killed 89 people and affected another 9 866 last year, according to the Department of Health.

Malaria is transmitted by infected mosquitoes, with children and pregnant women being the most susceptible to it.

According to the World Health Organisation, there are an estimated 300 million acute cases of malaria globally each year.

And now a potential breakthrough has been made in South Africa.

“This is truly a proud day for African science and African scientists. Our team is hopeful that the compound will emerge from rigorous testing as an extremely effective medicine for malaria,” said Professor Kelly Chibale, the founder and director of the UCT’s Drug Development and Discovery Centre (H3-D).

It has been hailed as evidence that South Africa is pioneering advancements in the medical field.

The candidate drug, from a class of compounds called aminopyridines, was identified by a team led by Prof Kelly Chibale, working in collaboration with the nonprofit Medicines for Malaria Venture (MMV).

The candidate drug, called MMV390048, has so far only been tested on rodents but the results are promising: it appears to be stable and safe, is effective against a variety of strains of the malaria parasite, and requires only a single dose to cure the animals of malaria, Prof Chibale said.

A single-dose cure would be ideal, because it would do away with the problem of people not finishing a course of treatment. If patients stop taking medication because they feel well again but before the parasite has been killed, it gives the parasite an opportunity to develop resistance to the drug.

The drug stays in the body for a long time, preventing regrowth of the parasite, which means it has the potential to block transmission of the parasite from one person to another, he said.

The compound has been patented, and research into its effects on malaria-infected rodents was published in the Journal of Medicinal Chemistry in March.

It has been selected by MMV’s scientific advisory committee for further clinical research. The next step will be to test its safety in a small group of healthy human volunteers in a phase one clinical trial.

The aim is to produce a drug that costs less than US$1 a day, so that it will be affordable to Africans, said Dr Leslie Street, head of medicinal chemistry and principal research officer at H3-D.

Even if all goes well with the clinical research, a new drug could still be three to five years down the road, he cautioned.

It is not clear at this stage whether the phase one trial will be carried out in South Africa, said Richard Gordon, regional representative for MMV, as there is limited local capacity to do this highly-specialised work.

Further work is also needed to identify a suitable company to manufacture MMV390048 in suitable quantities for the clinical trials.

Prof Chibale and his colleagues worked with scientists from the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute, the Centre for Drug Candidate Optimisation at Australia’s Monash University and India’s Syngene to home in on the candidate drug.

Their work was given a kick-start by researchers at Griffith University in Australia, who screened about six million compounds to identify the aminopyradine series from which MMV390048 was isolated.

Indian drug firms target African anti-malarial market


Business Line

P. T. JYOTHI DATTA

Mumbai-February 22, 2012

It was a decision grounded in practical reasons, but Bliss GVS Pharma’s strategy to sell its anti-malarial medicines through retail channels in African countries seems to have worked for it.

It managed to steer away from large players including Indian drug-makers like Cipla and Ipca, active in the global-funds-driven Government tenders market in these countries.

But that is poised to change – the African anti-malarial drugs market is set to get stirred. Bliss is preparing to make a play for the funds-driven segment, and companies like Cipla are eyeing the private, retail market. Africa accounts for over 80 per cent of the global malaria incidence.

Bliss targeted the retail market as its manufacturing facility was old and would not have passed World Health Organisation (WHO) specifications, says Managing Director, Mr S.N. Kamath, rather candidly. Positioning itself in a niche segment, the company targeted 26 African markets, with the exception of Botswana and South Africa, he said.

But over the next six to 12 months, Bliss is targeting the tender-driven market – where the Government sources large volumes from companies that offer medicines at reasonable prices. These Government-run programmes are supported by global funding organisations including UNAIDS, the Gates Foundation and the Global Fund for AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.

With India being home to several manufacturing facilities that meet global regulatory standards, Mr Kamath says, Bliss will tie up with a third-party to manufacture anti-malarials and target the African tender market. About 80 per cent of Bliss’ over Rs 220-crore turnover comes from exports and a lion’s share of that comes from anti-malarials…Read more.

Ghana- Storm over $130 million grant to Anglogold


The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis an...
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AfricaFiles no.25153, March 18, 2011

The Ghana Coalition of NGOs in Health (GCNH) has questioned the selection of AngloGold Ashanti by the Global Fund for HIV, Tuberculosis and malaria control, to carry out malaria programmes in Ghana. AngloGold received an amount of about $130 million last year to extend its malaria programme to 40 districts in the Ashanti, Western, Northern, Upper East and West, Regions. The coalition argues that it is often civil society organizations that are responsible for such activities in all countries, and is therefore baffled as to why in Ghana a multinational company was given that mandate. According to the group, the whole nation could have benefited from the amount if it had been given the money as it has members nationwide who could have prosecuted the programme unlike AngloGold which is doing the work only in districts of aforementioned Regions.

It alleged that AngloGold made a huge profit last year and could have organized the amount of money it has been given for such an assignment as corporate social responsibility. “Is it fair for a company that makes such profit to be given such grant meant for the whole country? The Global Fund gathers money from other multinational companies in the world therefore it is not fair that AngloGold should be the principal recipient,” Dr. Joan Awunyo-Akaba, National Chairperson of the coalition argued. She continued, “If it is true that AngloGold is trying to set up its NGO so it can share the money as a sub-recipient then I think it is unethical. Our information is that AngloGold has used only about $6 million of the money and has not covered even the slated districts. The money belongs to the people of Ghana so it is not too late for the company to get in touch with the coalition and work with us.Read more

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