Africa health care successes, challenges highlighted at conference

Africa Health Conference_Muhammad Pate
Muhammad Ali Pate addresses attendees at the first-ever Africa Health Conference at Harvard Chan School

February 28, 2023 – A range of topics regarding health care in Africa—including mental health, malaria, financing, and vaccine research, development, and manufacturing—were examined at the first-ever Africa Health Conference at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

The event, held February 18 and 19, was presented by the Harvard Chan Africa Health Students Forum and was aimed at both celebrating successes in health care in Africa and tackling challenges. More than two dozen speakers were featured. One of the keynoters was Muhammad Ali Pate, Julio Frenk Professor of the Practice of Public Health Leadership at Harvard Chan School and newly appointed CEO of Gavi, the vaccine alliance.

Esias Bedinger_Ayo Douglas_Hailu Dhufera
Co-chairs of the student-run conference, from left: Esias Bedingar, Ayo Douglas, Hailu Dhufera

Student co-chairs of the conference included Esias Bedingar, Hailu Dhufera, and Ayo Douglas. In a February 26 article about the conference in Harvard Kennedy School’s Africa Policy Journal, Esias said, “Being able to see a concentration of efforts and devotion toward restoration of Africa’s healthcare system from within ourselves was a renewal of fortifications of our power and innovation as Africans.”

Read the Africa Policy Journal article: African health conference sparks conversation on healthcare development in Africa

Read a Front Page Africa article: “Stop Begging for Technology, Support African Scientists” — Infectious Disease Expert Dr. Dougbeh Chris Nyan Urges at Harvard University Africa Health Conference

Photos courtesy Esias Bedingar