Cancer, diabetes patients to access affordable drugs


Cervical cancer vaccine
Cervical cancer vaccine

Cancer and diabetes patients in the country will from October this year be able to access low cost drugs.

This is according to First Lady Margaret Kenyatta who graced an occasion by Norvatis AG, a pharmaceutical firm planning to introduce affordable cancer drugs in Kenya.

Chairman of Norvatis Board of Directors, Jorg Reinhardt, says the firm will supply drugs to the government for as low as 1 US dollar (about Ksh 100) per treatment per month.

He said the initiative is part of Norvatis’s aim to strengthen its relationship with governments to improve the life of people all over the world.

“Meaningful change can only be attained in the world when the relationship between private enterprise and government is strengthened. We are ready to strengthen our relationship with government and NGOs,” said Mr Reinhardt.

The First Lady said the initiative by Norvatis complements the advocacy campaign African First Ladies have been undertaking to commit leaders in Africa and the world to support the campaign to expand access to prevention and treatment for cancer patients.

“It is my hope that the company will continue to undertake more research and medical trials so that it can produce more effective drugs for other types of cancers including prostate cancer which afflict men,” said Mrs Kenyatta.

The First Lady said the launch of the program in Kenya in October will be the beginning of a meaningful partnership between Kenya and Norvatis.

“We are not only focusing on government leaders, but also on private sector executives –like you. We want to build stronger public-private partnerships among African and global institutions to improve access and quality of cancer care,” said the First Lady, who is also the chairperson of the Forum of African First Ladies/ Spouses against Cervical, Breast and Prostate Cancer.

The pharmaceutical firm will roll out the new program in Kenya in conjunction with the Government, Ethiopia and Vietnam before extending the initiative to 27 other countries.

The First Lady welcomed the initiative by the pharmaceutical company to start the Norvatis Access Initiative, which will provide low-cost drugs for 15 non-communicable diseases including cancer and diabetes.

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Maureen Murimi
Story By Maureen Murimi
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