Universal ‘Nutrition’ and Health Coverage through Private-Public Partnerships between Ghana and Japan: The “Africa Health and Wellbeing Initiative” (AfHWIN) Story.

The Government of Japan and Ghana have been collaborating in many spheres for improved health system in Ghana. Despite the challenges of COVID-19, there is commendable progress towards achieving Universal Health Coverage.

Under the auspices of the Cabinet Secretariat, the Government of Japan, and the Japan Business Council for Africa (JBCA), a virtual seminar was held on 25th February 2022, focusing on innovative healthcare-related technologies and services by Japanese companies in addressing healthcare challenges in Ghana. Thus, achieving Universal Health Coverage. The event was a build-up on bilateral Memorandum of Cooperation signed in 2019 under “Africa Health and Wellbeing Initiative” (AfHWIN), through business-based collaborations.

The Ajinomoto Foundation (TAF) / KOKO Plus Foundation (KPF) amongst the six participants in the event, showcased their public-private partnership through the AfHWIN project: partnering with NEC, Sysmex, the Ghana Health Service, and the United Nation World Food Programme with funding from the Japanese Government.

 

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The project focuses on the common goal of improving child nutrition by multi-stakeholder's approach. It embraces a comprehensive approach of promoting behavior change among mothers, prevention of maternal and infant malnutrition through using our nutrient supplement powder KOKO Plus, digital health services (NEC), and early diagnosis of anaemia and malaria (Sysmex), provision of nutritious foods and livelihood support.

As a result, a multifaceted approach to promoting behavior change, prevention, and early diagnosis can be taken at various stages of maternal and child health care.

The Director General of the Ghana Health Service, Dr. Patrick Aboagye and the Japanese Ambassador commended the project.

The Japanese Ambassador in his speech demonstrated Japan and Ghana’s long-standing cooperation in the healthcare sector and encouraged future collaborations to strengthen the Ghana-Japan relationship in the healthcare sector. Moreover, his excellency admired Ajinomoto Foundation and KOKO Plus Foundation's efforts. Similarly, the Director General of the Ghana Health Service in his closing remarks showed Ghana’s willingness for continued collaboration with Japanese healthcare companies. He believed that the potential for partnerships among the public and private sectors with these companies could contribute to future Human Capital Development in Ghana!