Dr. Ngozwana to discuss access to essential medicines and health in Africa
DUBLIN AND JOHANNESBURG—October 7, 2015—Serenus Biotherapeutics today announced that its President Dr. Skhumbuzo Ngozwana will participate as a panelist in the workshop “Access to Essential Medicines and Health Commodities in Africa” on 13 October 2015 at the upcoming World Health Summit in Berlin, which is jointly organized by the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS and the German Healthcare Partnership.
While many African nations have made progress in scaling up access to medicines for HIV, malaria and tuberculosis, problems persist with availability and affordability of essential medicines in low-income and lower-middle-income countries. Bottlenecks in the drug supply chain, as well as funding constraints, contribute to these problems.
Rapidly emerging threats, such as Ebola, have highlighted the need for the timely development and sustainable supply of affordable and innovative medicines, and the critical need for Africa to develop competencies to deal with its specific challenges including neglected tropical diseases.
“To build on the progress that’s been made and to ensure access and affordability to medicines, African nations will need to develop health strategies, coherent policy frameworks, and well-coordinated health systems,” said Dr. Ngozwana. “It is also essential that these nations set and adequately fund research and development agendas for health that is focused on the needs of their populations.”
The “Access to Essential Medicines and Health Commodities in Africa” panel, which Dr. Ngozwana is participating in, will explore a variety of issues including the potential crisis in the supply of antiretrovirals in Africa and what can be done to secure affordable, quality supplies while scaling up treatment coverage, the evolving demand for pharmaceuticals in Africa, and quality assurance for local manufacturers and imported medicines.
Before joining Serenus Biotherapeutics Dr. Ngozwana served as a consultant to the World Health Organization (WHO), United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) and the United States Pharmacopeial Convention (USP).
The World Health Summit attracts more than 1,200 participants from around 80 countries including politicians, opinion leaders from civil society, academia, think tanks, foundations, and the private sector in order to discuss current medical research and innovation, health systems development and current and future approaches to global health challenges. The recommendations of the summit are presented to political, economic and healthcare decision makers to assist them in tackling global health issues.
About Serenus Biotherapeutics
Serenus Biotherapeutics is a privately held healthcare company that specializes in late-stage drug development, in-licensing, registering, and commercializing drugs and devices approved in the United States, Europe, and Japan to address unmet medical needs with high regional prevalence in the Sub-Saharan African market. For more information, visit www.serenusbio.com
About Dr. Skhumbuzo Ngozwana
Prior to joining Serenus Biotherapeutics, Dr. Ngozwana served as a consultant to the World Health Organization (WHO), United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) and the United States Pharmacopeial Convention (USP). Dr. Ngozwana worked as the lead consultant for the UNIDO, working on the African Union Commission -UNIDO partnership on the development of the Pharmaceutical Manufacturing Plan for Africa, which he co-authored. His last assignment was with WHO where he was involved in the development of, and co-authored the Ethiopian Pharmaceutical Sector Strategy and Action Plan.
Prior to that, he served as Deputy CEO of Cipla Medpro, one of Africa’s largest pharmaceutical companies. He served as chairman of the National Association of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers (NAPM) of South Africa, and was the founding chairman of the Southern African Generic Medicines Association (SAGMA), and is a current board member of the Federation of African Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Association (FAPMA). He sits on the board of the Biovac Initiative, a South Africa based vaccine manufacturer, and on the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research’s (CSIR) Biosciences Research Advisory Panel.
For Serenus Biotherapeutics
Levine Media Group