Merck Foundation brings African and Asian Countries together to Contribute towards Building Healthcare Capacity in the Continent

  • Merck Foundation conducts their 4th Luminary for the first time in partnership of Ministry of High Education and scientific research of Egypt.
  •  “Merck more than a Mother” to be launched by Vice President of Tanzania and First Ladies of Central African Republic , Gambia, Chad, Niger and Republic of Guinea with the aim to empower infertile women in their countries.
  •  More than 450 African healthcare providers, policy makers and researchers from Africa and Asia to benefit from several educational and social development sessions.
  • Winners of Merck Diabetes and Hypertension Awards to be announced.

After the success of Merck Africa Luminary in Germany, Kenya and cote D’Ivoire, Merck Foundation, a non-profit company and a subsidiary of Merck KGaA Germany, to conduct the Fourth edition of their annual “Merck Africa Asia Luminary” on the 24th and 25th of October 2017, in partnership with Egypt’s Ministry of High Education and Scientific Research, Africa Fertility Society and the International Federation of Fertility Societies- IFFS.





Prof. Frank Stangenberg-Haverkamp, Chairman of the Executive Board and Family Board of E-Merck KG emphasized “Merck is a value driven company and that is one of the reasons why Merck through its foundation is committed to support the social and economic development of Africa, Asia and developing countries by building healthcare capacity and improving access to innovative and equitable healthcare in the continent.”

Dr. Rasha Kelej , CEO of Merck Foundation emphasized “Merck Foundation will bring more than 450 healthcare providers, policy makers, academia and researchers from Africa, Asia and CIS countries to  benefit from the valuable educational and social development sessions by top international experts in Diabetes, Fertility, Oncology, Cardiology, Women Health and Research, with the aim to improve disease management, early detection and prevention, build healthcare and research capacity and improve access to innovative and equitable healthcare solutions in developing countries.”

“We are very proud to have very influential women leader to inaugurate the Luminary such as:  Vice President of Tanzania, H.E. Dr. Samia Hassan Suluhu, First Lady Republic of Guinea, H.E. Conde Djénè Kaba, First Lady of Gambia, H.E. Fatoumatta Bah-Barrow, First Lady of Niger, H.E. Aissata Issoufou Mahamadou, First Lady of Chad, H.E. Hinda Deby Itno and First Lady of Central African Republic, H.E. Brigitte Touadera. They will announce the start of “Merck more than a Mother” to empower infertile women through access to information, health and change of mind-set in their respective countries and the rest of Africa” Dr Kelej added.

Key African Ministers to participate in two High Level Panels:


Two high level panels of Ministers of Health and Gender to discuss the challenges and solutions to improve access to fertility and cancer care will also take place.

The first ministerial high level panel on “Merck more than a Mother’s role in defining interventions to break the stigma around infertility in Africa and Asia,” involved Hon. Zuliatu Cooper, Minister of Health & Sanitation, Sierra Leone; Hon. Julia Cassell, Minister of Gender, Children and Social Protection, Liberia; Hon. Susan Shabangu, Minister for Women, South Africa; and Hon. Betty Amongi, Minister of Lands, Housing and Urban Development, Uganda and Dr Rasha Kelej , Chief Executive Officer of Merck Foundation to chair the panel discussion

The second ministerial panel on “The Role of Merck Foundation Together with Governments to improve access to equitable healthcare solutions in Africa and Asia ”,” included Hon. Chilatu Chilufya, Minister of Health Republic of Zambia; Hon. Julieta Kavetuna, Deputy Minister of Health and Social Services of Namibia; Hon. Saffie Lowe Ceesay, Minister of Health, Gambia; Hon. Idi Illassou Mainassara , Minister of Health of Niger; Hon. Ngarmbatina Odimbeye Soukate, Minister of Health, Chad; Hon. Jocelyne Fernande Djengbot , Minister of Health, Central African Republic; Hon. Abdourahmane Diallo , Minister of Health of Republic of Guinea. Others in the panel include President of International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics (FIGO); Prof. Dr. Kailash Sharma, Director, Tata Memorial Centre, India; Prof. Dileep Mhaisekar, Vice Chancellor - Maharashtra University of Health Sciences (MUHS) India and Dr. Rasha Kelej, Chief Executive Officer, Merck Foundation to chair the panel.

Healthcare Providers and Academia will also be engaged in an open dialogue to explore the educational gaps with the aim to inform the successful implementation of Merck Diabetes and Hypertension Capacity Advancement Program. In addition to witness the announcement of the winners of the ‘Merck Diabetes and Hypertension Awards’ from across Africa and Asia at the Award Ceremony Dinner.

Countries participating include: Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Mozambique, Angola, South Africa, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Rwanda, Ghana, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Ethiopia, Congo, Senegal, Cote d’Ivoire, Liberia, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Mali, Malawi, Morocco, Tunisia, Sudan, Gambia, Burkina Faso, Niger, Chad, Liberia, Burundi, Mali, Malawi, Equatorial Guinea, Russia, Uzbekistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Nepal, and India, Indonesia.

Dignitaries at the Merck Africa Luminary 2016

Dr. Rasha Kelej, Chief Social Officer, Merck Healthcare and Senator Dr Lanre Tejuoso, Chair Senate Committee for Health, Nigeria with infertile women from Nigeria who have been empowered through “Merck More than a Mother”.

HE Dominique Ouattara, First Lady Cote D'Ivoire, HE Brigitte Touadera, First Lady, Central African Republic, Dr. Belen Garijo and Dr. Rasha Kelej view goods being sold by empowered infertile women


Read more about the 2nd and 3rd edition of Merck Africa luminary in Kenya and Cote d’Ivoire respectively.

Merck Africa Luminary in Kenya 2015 - https://www.merck-foundation.com/MF_ArticalDetail?id=a2tw0000000NDnK

Merck Africa Luminary in Cote D’Ivoire 2016 - https://www.merck-foundation.com/MF_ArticalDetail?id=a2tw0000000NDt0

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About Merck Foundation
The Merck Foundation, established in 2017, is a philanthropic organization that aims to improve the health and wellbeing of people and advance their lives through science and technology. Our efforts are primarily focused on improving access to innovative healthcare solutions in underserved communities, building healthcare and scientific research capacity and empowering people in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) with a special focus on women and youth. All Merck Foundation press releases are distributed by e-mail at the same time they become available on the Merck Foundation Website.   Please go to www.merck-foundation.com  to read more and/or register online to interact and exchange experience with our registered members.
Merck Foundation is a subsidiary of Merck KGaA Germany


About Merck
Merck is a leading science and technology company in healthcare, life science and performance materials. Around 50,000 employees work to further develop technologies that improve and enhance life – from biopharmaceutical therapies to treat cancer or multiple sclerosis, cutting-edge systems for scientific research and production, to liquid crystals for smartphones and LCD televisions. In 2016, Merck generated sales of € 15.0 billion in 66 countries.
Founded in 1668, Merck is the world's oldest pharmaceutical and chemical company. The founding family remains the majority owner of the publicly listed corporate group. Merck holds the global rights to the Merck name and brand. The only exceptions are the United States and Canada, where the company operates as EMD Serono, MilliporeSigma and EMD Performance Materials.


Until we see each other again, 


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