Bridging The Gaps: Supporting Health In Vulnerable Countries
The world is divided by differences, both controllable and uncontrollable. From a child born with a silver spoon in his mouth to a child whose parents are fighting hard to meet even the basic necessities of life, the world has rather been unfair and unequal. Yet, one human aspect where the world should be unanimous, seamless and barrier-free is – HEALTHCARE, where race, gender, nationality, place or economic conditions become irrelevant.
And we all must create such a world so that health becomes synonymous with equality and fairness.
Today, while we may have made significant progress in the healthcare sector, we still have a long way to go until we reach the ideal health status of each country and every individual. Unfortunately, there are several countries where accessibility to healthcare remains a big challenge. Among them, major countries in Africa have been ranked amongst the nations with the lowest healthcare equality.
We would like to shed some light on the health status of the under-mentioned African countries-
Ethiopia – Despite being a fast growing country of the continent, Ethiopia experiences health problems like that of an underdeveloped country. It remains one of the high health-burden countries (HBCs) with Tuberculosis remaining to be one of the leading causes of mortality. Infectious diseases like HIV, malaria, diarrhoea and pneumonia account for a majority of health problems that continue to pose a threat in the country.
Tanzania – As a resource strained country, Tanzania has a weak healthcare system which is challenged by high maternal mortality, child mortality, HIV/AIDS, pneumonia, and malaria.
Mozambique – HIV/AIDS, TB, and Malaria top the spread of major communicable diseases in Mozambique. However, there is an increasing focus on other communicable and non-communicable diseases such as cancer, heart disease, high-blood pressure, diabetes, and others.
Burkina Faso – Malaria continues to be a major public health concern, with endemic prevalence throughout Burkina Faso. The disease accounts for 43 percent of health provider consultations and 22 percent of reported deaths in the country.
Central African Republic – With 71% of the population living below the international poverty line and life expectancy of just 55, Central African Republic significantly lacks in hospitals and medical facilities.
Zimbabwe – The country is under equipped with hospitals HIV, TB and malaria, all of which are highly preventable, contributing considerably to maternal and childhood death.
Ghana – Malaria in Ghana occurs every year and affects people of all ages and demographics with women and children under 5 being the most vulnerable groups. In addition, poor communities are disproportionately affected by infectious diseases compared to wealthy communities due to a lack of access to adequate healthcare, and anti-malaria medication.
THE ADDED IMPACTS OF CLIMATE CHANGE
Africa is experiencing a more pronounced warming trend compared to the rest of the world. Additionally, the rise in sea levels along African coastlines is outpacing the global average, leading to a heightened occurrence of coastal flooding, erosion, and increased salinity in low-lying cities.
As a result, the increase in temperature, heatwaves, extensive floods, tropical cyclones, prolonged droughts, and sea level rise increase the vulnerability to diseases borne by vectors, air, and water, leading to increased morbidity and mortality. For example, climate models project an increase in temperature in Ethiopia between 1.4°C and 2.9°C by the 2050s. Additionally, rapid population growth combined with global warming has the potential to cause extensive indirect health effects. Similarly, in Tanzania which is already experiencing increased climate variability and climate change, a further rise in sea level can result in devastating floods and affect over eight lacs people.
However, this loss of lives is not only on account of the natural calamities, but sometimes even due to the ill health preparedness.
Addressing such alarming conditions calls for timely treatments. However, ensuring accessibility to suitable treatments requires the presence of health facilities and manufacturing capabilities to cater to the vast population. This situation may appear complex, but it is resolvable and attainable.
LEAVING NO ONE BEHIND – OUR ACTION
In the present times, one cannot deny that the Climate Crisis and Health Crisis are interconnected. Therefore, in line with our endeavour to step up for climate change, we have been meaningfully contributing to numerous healthcare projects.
Our services span across the world, including the African continent and, in particular, the aforementioned countries facing acute health challenges. Our projects in Africa encompass our start-to-finish pharma engineering solutions that play an active part in ensuring a smooth, effective and uninterrupted processing of medicines. This includes our air filtration solutions through (Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) HVAC systems, process equipment such as granulation line, water systems, drug production line, laboratory facilities, containment systems, water solutions etc.
Our Manufacturing Capability involves state-of-the-art processes that transform drug formulations into final dosage forms ready for distribution and consumption. With a complete range of production equipment for liquids and tablet manufacturing, we aid in providing accessibility to essential drugs to combat local and seasonal disease outbreaks. The establishment of manufacturing capabilities in Africa has significantly catered to prevalent diseases and saved many lives.
Our Injectable Line, a critical equipment, operates on ingenious technology with stringent monitoring and control. It includes our complete production and packaging line of drug dosages, parental and sterile liquids in vials, ampoules, and prefilled syringes, water for injection system, along with filling and capping machines.
Inclusive Cleanroom Solutions viz. cleanroom systems, equipment and cleanroom infrastructure ensure a successful manufacturing execution while maintaining the integrity of the working environment. Cleanroom integration protects products and ensures the well-being of personnel, achieving a contaminant-free and controlled environment.
All our solutions and equipment have the ability to considerably enhance healthcare, achieving product safety, patients’ well-being and contributing to better healthcare. Some of our notable projects include NVI in Ethiopia, Zenufa in Tanzania, Varichem Pharmaceutical and Datlabs in Zimbabwe, Ernest & Letap Pharma in Ghana amongst others.
Addressing healthcare disparities and tackling climate change is a long-term endeavour that requires persistence, adaptability, and a steadfast commitment to making a positive impact on people’s lives. By staying dedicated to our mission and engaging closely with the communities, we strive to bring about meaningful change to become a more health equitable and sustainable world, sooner than later.
Establishing resilient and efficient healthcare facilities, particularly in climate-affected and other vulnerable regions, can substantially enhance overall health conditions.
Fabtech’s comprehensive start-to-finish solutions are a major building block that paves the path for making medicines affordable.
We are backed by a team of highly committed ‘life engineers’ who skillfully develop tailor-made solutions for a range of pharma projects including the most complex ones. Now, as Fabtech steps up for climate change, it adds more strength to our continued resolve to saving lives around the globe.
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