Partnering to solve healthcare ecosystems challenges
We collaborate with like-minded partners that have expertise in working with low-income and vulnerable populations to improve healthcare.
Community awareness and linkages to care
Through our Healthy Family programs, we have developed a unique model of community health education to empower rural patients to adopt health-seeking behaviors. As part of these programs in India, Kenya and Vietnam, we work with the government and local organizations on training programs to enhance the medical knowledge of healthcare practitioners in rural areas, in particular on diagnosis and treatment for chronic conditions.
In Ethiopia, we work with partners to decentralize noncommunicable disease (NCD) care to community and primary care levels. With Tropical Health and Education Trust (THET), we are training healthcare professionals – ranging from doctors to nurses and health extension workers at hospital, health center and community levels – on diagnosis and treatment of hypertension, diabetes and chronic respiratory disease. In order to steer progress, we are implementing a framework that measures our objectives against a set of output, outcome and impact indicators.
Health system strengthening
Through faith-based organizations in Kenya and Uganda, such as the Christian Health Association of Kenya and the Uganda Protestant Medical Bureau, respectively, we provide ongoing medical education on NCDs according to national standard treatment guidelines, and support community outreaches to increase awareness, screenings, and linkages to healthcare.
Since 2017, we are working with the American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP) and the American Cancer Society (ASC) to strengthen the capacity of healthcare providers and facilities, complementing work happening on the ground to improve access to cancer diagnosis and treatment in Ethiopia, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda and Malawi. ASCP is building capacity for immunohistochemistry analysis in seven hospital laboratories, and ACS is providing training in safe handling and use of chemotherapy.
Distribution and supply chain integrity
We have developed an IT system with Greenmash to register patients and track medicine dispensing. We will implement this system first in Pakistan to support accurate stock management from the warehouse to dispensing pharmacies, and help ensure the medicines reach the right patients.
Further, we are experimenting with a novel approach to help strengthen supply chain management and quality assurance on the ground through an employee volunteering program whereby Novartis experts train partner organizations. In 2018 and 2019, we organized train-the-trainer workshops with pharmacists, accountants and warehouse personnel in Cameroon, Ethiopia and Uganda.
Advocacy and policy
In 2018 and 2019, in order to bring voices from local malaria experts – from government, the research community and NGOs – in the global debate, we commissioned an opinion research in sub-Saharan and Central Africa, and in five countries in South and Southeast Asia on progress and challenges toward the 2030 malaria elimination goals. Despite differences, the MalaFA (Malaria Futures for Africa/Asia) reports identify common challenges such as the need for increased domestic financing; training new cohorts of healthcare workers in malaria care; and continued investment in R&D to effectively fight insecticide and ACT resistance.