GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) is a global pharmaceutical company that researches and develops vaccines, medicines, and consumer healthcare products to improve people’s health and well-being. GSK has a significant global presence with operations in more than 150 countries. GSK is one of the largest producers of vaccines and has distributed over 800 million doses.
Amref Health Africa's partnership with GSK spans 25 years and encompasses a wide range of projects that have positively impacted the lives of over 3 million people. Working together, GSK and Amref Health Africa are pursing common goals: training thousands of frontline health workers, increasing access to healthcare, helping women give birth safely and strengthening healthcare systems to help ensure a healthier future for Africa.
Project in Focus – 20% Reinvestment Initiative
In 2011, GSK announced a commitment to reinvest 20% of profits back into improving the healthcare infrastructure in the world’s least developed countries. Amref Health Africa was one of three organizations chosen by GSK to receive funding to implement projects in East Africa and Southern Africa. Through this partnership Amref Health Africa is increasing the number of trained healthcare workers in rural and marginalized communities and specifically addressing the health challenges affecting pregnant women and children under age five. The main focus of interventions is on capacity building and training of mid-level health workers and community health workers, empowering communities in the target countries and partnering with Ministries of Health, private sector and NGO partners identified by Amref Health Africa and/or GSK.
Amref Health Africa is currently implementing projects in 13 countries with GSK support including the Health Extension Workers (HEWs) in Ethiopia provide basic curative and preventive health services in every rural community in the country. In coordination with the Ethiopian national government Amref is providing upgrade training to HEWs to increase their knowledge and skills so that they can provide a wider range of healthcare services in their communities and thereby contribute to a reduction in morbidity and mortality. To date a total of 1,367 HEWs have received training which exceeds the planned target of 1,000.
In one year a project in Matala Angola trained community health workers who then focused on educating and mobilizing a target group of 32,000 households on key health practices. The goal was exceeded and nearly 35,000 families were reached with key messages on such areas as malaria, acute respiratory infections, diarrheal diseases, nutrition, basic sanitation and hygiene.