Tuesday, February 7, 2023

COVID-19 Exposed Gaps In Global Health Systems – Ngirente 

The Prime Minister, Rwanda, Hon. Édouard Ngirente.
The Prime Minister, Rwanda, Hon. Édouard Ngirente.

The Rwandan prime minister, Hon. Édouard Ngirente has said that the COVID-19 pandemic exposed gaps in the global health systems, including inadequate preparedness, access to vaccines and technologies, as well as a dearth of efficient, well-trained personnel.

Ngitrente, who was speaking at the second Annual International Conference on Public Health in Africa (CPHIA 2022) yesterday (December 13, 2022) in Kigali, Rwanda, stressed the need for the continent to prioritise and invest in national health programmes.

“Public health is about the capacities of countries to take appropriate actions to protect and care for the health of the citizens.  

“As such, resilient public health practices must have systems able to detect and respond effectively to outbreaks,” he explained.

According to him, the CPHIA is a unique platform to discuss challenges and build a resilient healthcare system, as well as a platform to leverage African potential.

He said that there is a correlation between the health of the citizens and economic growth. 

“To build a better future across Africa, we need resilient health systems and it is high time that Africa leverages the existing opportunities to build them,” he advised. 

According to CPHIA 2022 co-chair, Prof. Senait Fisseha Africa has many life-saving lessons and guidance to share with the rest of the world. 

Fisseha said that CPHIA2022 was no longer just a conference. “It is now a movement. 

“CPHIA is a manifestation of the best of our continent and a movement to propel Africa’s new public health order.  

“This is what it looks like when we come together with commitment to build the platforms and institutions that we wish existed,” she said. 

She explained that platforms like CPHIA2022 not only elevate the African New Public Health Order but add political value to the broader global health discourse. 

Meanwhile, the acting director, Africa Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, Dr. Ahmed Ouma, said that it was time for a new public health order to achieve the health security agenda for Africa. 

Ouma said that the CPHIA is a platform for African and international experts to provide solutions to public health threats and emergencies in Africa and globally. 

“It is time for Africa to take ownership and responsibility in shaping our present and our future. 

“It is crucial to create a space where ideas and insights are shared amongst the brightest African and international minds. CPHIA2022 is that space. 

“Africa needs each one of us to contribute; contributions from the young and old, men and women, the citizen and the visitor. We all have a role to play in continuing to safeguard Africa’s health. We must first believe in ourselves.

Science Nigeria reports that the CPHIA 2022 aims to significantly advance efforts to strengthen research, innovation and emergency management in Africa.

Racheal Abujah
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