Items filtered by date: Monday, 05 October 2020

Focusing On Africa's Challenges & Opportunities In Digital Health

Omnia Health Live Africa ( set to bring together policy drivers, thought leaders, expert clinicians and decision-makers to transform healthcare's most pressing challenges through collaboration and empowerment.

The international healthcare community sits at a critical juncture, particularly with the COVID-19 pandemic placing a spotlight on some of the industry's biggest resource challenges.

According to Wouter Molman, Executive Vice President for Informa Markets – Healthcare, the pressures placed on Africa's healthcare systems over the last six months have led to a stronger call for innovative technological and digital solutions to support better patient management, universal access and disease prevention.

Omnia Health Live Africa, a free-to-attend virtual event from 12-16 October 2020, will address human, infrastructural and policy challenges and opportunities relating to the adoption of these digital health technologies in Africa.

The largest virtual healthcare tradeshow of its kind in Africa, brought by Informa Markets, the five-day event will unite some of the most innovative and knowledgeable minds from African healthcare communities, allowing attendees to keep up to date on the latest developments shaping the African healthcare industry.

Technologies such as the Internet of Things, wearables, and sensors are opening up possibilities for easier monitoring of individuals' health in remote areas. According to reports, more than 400 million people live on the continent with little or no access to healthcare. Half of this population lives in rural areas, but only one-quarter of doctors in Africa are deployed there.

Big data and telemedicine are also gaining widespread adoption across Africa. Recently, the Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA) amended its guidelines for telemedicine. The technology has risen to the challenge to fill the void created by the lack of medical personnel on the continent.

For instance, wider adoption of telemedicine turned out to be an asset for countries such as Nigeria where, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO), there are only four doctors per 10,000 patients, or South Africa where reportedly at least 80 per cent of the population doesn't have direct access to professional healthcare advice because they either can't afford it or live in rural areas without medical facilities.

Artificial intelligence (AI) is also a radical game-changer, offering tremendous promise in transforming healthcare in Africa. It acts as a viable tool for tackling health challenges, reducing costs, and improving health access and quality. A breakthrough use of the technology has been in using it to scan through lung CTs for signs of COVID--related pneumonia.

A worldwide shortage of healthcare workers, particularly serious in many African countries, is predicted to reach 18 million by 2030. This increases the case for investment in AI tools, which can help nurses and community health workers diagnose and treat illnesses typically seen by doctors.

Wouter Molman, Executive Vice President for Informa Markets – Healthcare explains that both AI and telemedicine will be discussed by experts during sessions on infrastructure and digital innovation at Omnia Health Live Africa. "Attendees will learn how to apply AI in a health maturity framework, while a panel discussion in collaboration with the Novartis Foundation will address telemedicine opportunities and challenges in Africa from a policy and regulatory perspective."

In all, attendees will access over 30 clinical and business sessions that will feature more than 110 global speakers who will empower the virtual audience with access to the latest healthcare industry content. Speakers include renowned names such as Dr. John Nkemgasong, Irene Ogongo and Prof. Morgan Chetty, among others.

The event has adopted six pillars as the foundation for the knowledge-sharing sessions. These include Patient Safety, Leadership, Diagnostics, Infrastructure, Supply Chain and Evidence-Based Medicine. The pillars have been carefully curated to address African specific healthcare issues with topical and relevant information and education.

With the healthcare industry increasingly looking to connect and collaborate online, Omnia Health Live Africa also offers exciting opportunities for hospital management, medical equipment distributors and healthcare trade professionals to interact virtually, build new connections and source cutting-edge products and services.

Exhibitors may gain access to attendees who are primarily from Africa; initiate engagement with prospects; benefit from attendee insights for smarter matchmaking; showcase brands and products in a virtual exhibition hall; and interact with potential clients in real-time.

  • Published in News

Lato Milk Adds Five More Flavours To Yoghurt Market

Pearl Dairy Farms Ltd the producer of Lato Milk has added five more flavours to their yoghurt range providing their consumers with a total of seven varieties to choose from.

The new yoghurt flavours which include apricot, peach, butterscotch, coconut and plain were officially launched by the State Minister of Finance for Investment and Privatisation, Hon. Evelyn Anite on Saturday 3th/October 2020 at Pearl Diary premises in Mbarara town.

Speaking at the launch, Hon. Anite applauded Pearl Diary for the quality of their products adding that the new additional Yoghurt flavours will give Ugandans a variety to choose from.

"Yoghurt is very healthy for children and adults. It has good bacteria that keep our bodies strong and resistant to diseases. I have tested the new flavours and can testify they are very sweet and of high international quality. I urge Ugandans to buy Lato products, let us support our own local products," she said.

The Minister further applauded the Processor for creating over 10,000 jobs for Ugandans and putting Uganda on the world map through exporting high-quality products. She promised, through government, to continue supporting the investor through access to affordable credit, providing reliable and affordable electricity and access to the local and regional market.

"I have been informed by the owners of Pearl Dairy that they want affordable credit for expansion, reliable electrify and access to the market. Some of our regional markets especially Kenya got issues last year but we are working hard to resolve those issues. I have also asked them to put in a request to the Uganda Development Bank for the credit they need. We will also continue to provide reliable electricity at affordable rates like we have been doing for all our investors," she noted.

The Pearl Diary Chairman, Mr. Bhasker Kotecha in his remarks said the company started producing Yoghurt six months back but because they was no market, they started with only two flavours of Vanilla and strawberry and are now adding more five flavours to give their consumers more choices.

Mr Kotecha further added that due to limited access to the Kenyan market towards the end of 2019, and the COVID 19 Pandemic that broke out in Uganda in March, the company has largely slashed the amount of milk it buys from farmers which has largely affected farmers who have a lot of milk but don't have the market for it.

"In 2019, Pearl Diary paid Shs136b to farmers, this year, we have only paid Shs 32b as of September. This largely affects the farmers who have a lot of milk but have nowhere to sell it. As we also look to expand our markets to other countries, we ask the government to work on the market access issues with in the EAC region because that is where our biggest market is," he said.

Commenting on the new products, Mr. Devendra Seth, the Managing Director Pearl Dairy said the additional products reaffirm the company's commitment to meet the changing needs of their customers and continuous effort to be innovative.  

He said, ‘We have seen and appreciated how much our customers love the two yoghurt flavours we have had on the market to date.  However, we recently conducted research and found that they want greater variety to choose from and that is what we are providing, with these five new flavours.”

The new flavours will be added to the Vanilla and strawberry flavours and will be available in 400 gram and 200gram pouches and 500gram, 250gram, 150 gram and 100 gram cup sizes. 

Mr. Seth said, “Our continuous commitment to excellence is what drives our offerings to meet the ever-evolving needs of the market. With the use of modern milk processing techniques, we offer high quality and innovative solutions through value-addition for our various products. Launching these additional flavours is another big step toward achieving our goals.”

He said research and development for the new flavours first started two years ago in New Zealand. New Zealand is a world leader in dairy processing. Mr. Seth said after carefully monitoring and testing a variety of recipes with technical assistance from a highly qualified consultant, the new flavours were put into production.

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