Cancer prevalence in Uganda, highest in East Africa- Minister Opendi

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Merck Foundation a non-profit organization, and a subsidiary of Merck KGaA underscored their commitment to long term partnership with Government of Uganda to build healthcare capacity with special focus on diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, infertility and cancer.

During the high-level meeting between His Excellency Prime Minister of Uganda, Dr. Ruhakana Rugunda, Uganda Minister of State of Health, Hon. Sarah Opendi, Chairman of the Executive Board of E. Merck KG, Prof. Frank Stangenberg-Haverkamp and the CEO of Merck Foundation Dr Rasha Kelej, Merck Foundation affirmed their commitment to long term partnership with the Government of Uganda to continue their efforts to improve access to healthcare solutions across the country.

Prof. Frank Stangenberg-Haverkamp, emphasized his commitment to working with Uganda Ministry of Health because of great strides the country has made in building regional centres of excellence for fertility and cancer.
Merck Foundation together with the Uganda Ministry of Health visited rural villages in Western Uganda where ‘Merck More than a Mother’ campaign has established various income generating projects to support infertile women. The Merck Foundation handed over an oxen plough, poultry farms and table banking projects to ‘Merck more than a Mother’ women groups to empower them socially and economically.

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Merck Foundation, through their ‘Merck More than a Mother’ campaign focuses on empowering infertile women through access to information, awareness, health, change of mind set and economic support in addition to building fertility care capacity across the continent.
During their visit to the Uganda Cancer Centre, Uganda Minister for Health, Hon. Sarah Opendi noted “Cancer prevalence in Uganda is the highest in East Africa, with about 300 cases reported in every 1,000 people. She thanked the Merck Company for their continued support in healthcare in the country in terms of technological assistance and capacity building of oncologists and especially to the institute which is the only one of its kind in the region.”

“Through Merck Cancer Access Program, Merck Foundation will continue doing what they do best, building cancer care capacity through providing one, two and three year oncology fellowship programs to doctors and technicians in partnership with the Ministry of Health of Uganda with the aim of increasing the limited number of oncologists in the country and across Africa” said Dr. Rasha Kelej.

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