The Ajinomoto Foundation, Sysm – GuruFocus.com
Contribute to Universal Health Coverage “Nutrition”
TOKYO, May 27, 2022 — (JCN Newswire) — The Ajinomoto Foundation, Sysmex Corporation and NEC Corporation are set to launch initiatives for a co-creation project (the “Project”) aimed at improving maternal health and nutrition. children in the Republic of Ghana (Ghana).
This project is part of the Memorandum of Collaboration between Japan and Ghana for the implementation of Universal Health Coverage (UHC)(1) expansion and the Africa Health and Wellbeing initiative (AfHWIN)(2) proposed at the 7th Tokyo International Conference on African Development(3) (TICAD7) in August 2019. As a specific project of this initiative, we aim to promote public-private collaboration and private sector in both countries to improve maternal and child health and nutrition in Ghana.
In Ghana, malnutrition and malaria(4) are among the most serious health problems and are considered the most important risk factors for death and disability(5). Malnutrition is a major factor in stunting unborn children and infants and causes anemia, which increases the risk of severe malaria. In addition, children under five and pregnant women are particularly vulnerable(6) to malaria, hence the importance of adopting an integrated approach to the prevention of malnutrition, anemia and malaria.
Since 2019, the World Food Program (WFP) and TAF have implemented activities in cooperation with the Ghana Health Service (GHS) to promote maternal behavior change and recommend the nutritional supplement KOKO Plus(7) as a solution. specific to improve nutrition. By further developing this project and combining high-quality testing with Japan’s ICT, we will accelerate activities to improve maternal and child nutrition, and also aim to create a mechanism to contribute to the health promotion of mothers and Ghanaian children and therefore sustainable and stable economic growth. The 8th Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD8), held in August 2022 in Tunisia, will be broadcast worldwide as a case of activity and will be promoted to support non-governmental activities aimed at improving the maternal and child health in Africa.
Through public-private partnerships between Japan and Ghana, this project aims to achieve Goal 2 “Zero Hunger” and Goal 3 “Good Health and Wellbeing” while practicing Goal 17 “Partnerships for goals” among the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). We will help accelerate the expansion of UHC while co-creating greater value through cross-sectoral efforts to solve social challenges in the public and private sectors.
See below for the history and overview of this project.
August 2019: Holding of TICAD7 and adoption of the 2019 Yokohama Declaration.
Launch of the Japan Business Council for Africa and conclusion of a memorandum of cooperation between Japan and Ghana.
February 2021: Nutrition-Anemia-Malaria-ICT co-creation concept suggestion to Ghanaian government and healthcare professionals during the Ghana-Japan Healthcare Business webinar sponsored by the Council of Secretary-Japan Business Council for Africa.
October 2021: Exchange of Notes(8) on Nutrition Enhancement Grant Funding for the Republic of Ghana, “Nutrition” Universal Health Coverage Plan (through WFP) through a system sustainable improvement in nutrition.
March 2022: Conclusion of a contract between the WFP office in Ghana and the KOKO Plus Foundation for the development of this project.
March 2022: Based on the contract between the WFP office in Ghana and the KOKO Plus Foundation, a contract was concluded between the relevant staff located in Japan and Ghana(9).
April 2022: Held the launch event of the new Japan-funded nutrition program – Universal Health Coverage “Nutrition” through sustainable nutrition improvement systems in Ghana.
2. Overview of this project
By combining effective nutrition education for mothers and children in Ghana using ICTs with business approaches such as production of supplements by local private companies and marketing and undercover activities by local NGOs to enable sustainability, we will bring about behavioral change in health care and strengthen the health system. through the development of human resources of health professionals. Using innovative ICT and clinical testing technologies originating in Japan, it will help create environments where pregnant women, breastfeeding women, caregivers and children can benefit from high quality nutrition and health services.
2-2. Participating organizations and companies
Japan: TAF, Sysmex and NEC
Ghana: KOKO Plus Foundation (NGO), Sysmex West and Central Africa Ltd. (local branch)
TAF/ KOKO Plus Foundation:
– Cooperation with WFP and management of the whole project
Improve health and nutrition referral capacity through training of health center staff in collaboration with Ghana Health Services
– Building a supply chain for the nutritional supplement KOKO Plus around health centers
– Provide experiences and networks in Ghana over the past decades as a platform
Sysmex/ Sysmex West and Central Africa Ltd. :
– Promote improved quality and access to testing through the introduction of malaria diagnostic medical devices
– Educational activities for health professionals (clinical laboratory technicians and clinicians) leading to the early detection and treatment of anemia, malnutrition and malaria through human resource development, an academic symposium, etc.
– Collaboration with the GHS and the National Malaria Control Program*10
– Development of applications to support the health check and nutritional instructions
– Promote behavioral change in mothers and children through the use of newly developed apps that help provide health checkup information, nutritional instructions, and recommendations for ingestion of KOKO Plus and/or additional testing in hospitals where Sysmex clinical test devices are installed
– Provide tablet and ICT training for health center staff
(1) Universal Health Coverage (UHC) means that all people have access to the health services they need, when and where they need them, without financial hardship. It includes the full range of essential health services, from health promotion to prevention, treatment, rehabilitation and palliative care.
(2) Memorandum of cooperation in the fields of health care and health between the Office of Health and Medical Strategies of the Japanese Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare and the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Ghana www.kantei.go.jp/jp/singi/kenkouiryou/pdf/20190820_ghana_hc.pdf
(3) TICAD is an international conference on the theme of African development. Since 1993, it has been led by the Japanese government and organized jointly with the United Nations, the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), the World Bank and the African Union Commission (AUC). The number of meetings is indicated by “TICAD7”.
(4) Malaria is one of the three major infectious diseases of the world defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) and is widely endemic mainly in tropical and subtropical regions of the world. A protozoan disease caused by Plasmodium as a mosquito-borne parasite which, when it enters the body, infects red blood cells in the blood after a certain incubation period, with symptoms such as high fever, headaches, vomiting and anemia. According to the WHO World Malaria Report 2021, the number of people affected and the total number of deaths in 2020 would be around 241 million and 627,000, respectively.
www.malarianomore.jp/archives/12598 (Japanese text)
(5) The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME)
(6) Children under five are particularly vulnerable to both malaria and malnutrition, and malaria can be more severe in malnourished children. Malaria also increases the risk of poor maternal and neonatal outcomes, including anemia and death in pregnant women, spontaneous abortion, stillbirth, prematurity, low birth weight, and neonatal and infant mortality .
Nutrition and Malaria: Integrated Approach for Effective Case Management
(7) Registered trade in TAF supplements to improve infant nutrition
(8) Exchange of Notes regarding Nutrition Enhancement Grants for the Republic of Ghana.
www.mofa.go.jp/mofaj/press/release/press6_000941.html (Japanese text)
(9) This agreement is a contract between 5 parties: TAF and its Ghanaian subsidiary
implementing partner KOKO Plus Foundation, Sysmex and its local subsidiary in Ghana, Sysmex West and Central Africa and NEC
(10) The GHS organization that manages the fight against malaria in Ghana
About the Ajinomoto Foundation
The Ajinomoto Foundation was established in 2017 with the aim of contributing to solutions to crucial social problems, by carrying out programs related to “nutritional improvement through food”. We have 4 public benefit programs which include ‘Disaster Reconstruction Assistance Project’, ‘Ghana Nutrition Improvement Project (GNP)’, ‘Food and Nutrition (AIN Program)” and “Dietitian Project in Low-Income Countries (VINEP)”. “www.theajinomotofoundation.org/
About Sysmex Corporation
In line with its mission to “shape the advancement of healthcare”, which is defined in the “Sysmex Way”, the corporate philosophy of the Sysmex Group, Sysmex strives to contribute to the development of healthcare and the healthy life of people. Sysmex conducts integrated R&D, manufacturing and sales activities, and provides support services for its instruments, reagents and software for in vitro testing of blood, urine and other body fluids. Sysmex supplies its products to medical institutions in more than 190 countries and regions around the world. Sysmex strives to improve access to appropriate health care so that as many people as possible can benefit from it. To this end, we help promote UHC in emerging and developing countries by making the tests widely available. www.sysmex.co.jp/en/index.html
About NEC Corporation
NEC Corporation has established itself as a leader in the integration of information technology and networks while promoting the brand statement “Orchestrating a Brighter World”. NEC enables businesses and communities to adapt to the rapid changes occurring both in society and in the marketplace, as it provides the social values of safety, security, fairness and efficiency to promote a more sustainable world where everyone has the chance to reach their full potential. For more information, visit NEC at www.nec.com.
Source: NEC Corporation
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