2nd African Congress On Sickle Cell Disease Virtual Hosted Successfully

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Last May, relevant key stakeholders from across Africa and the World shared ideas and proffered evidence-based recommendations during the Virtual 2nd African Congress on Sickle Cell Disease, with the theme “Working to Overcome Sickle Cell Disease: What Next?.” 

The Congress organized by Doctor SickleCell/Sickle Cell Disease Africa continues to be recognized as one of the most-inclusive sickle cell conferences in Africa. The 5-day event featured over 98 speakers that ranged from public health & sickle cell experts, medical practitioners, researchers, academia, advocates, governmental and non-governmental organizations including People living with Sickle Cell Disease(PLWSCD). Speakers included H.E Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, Dr. Matshidiso Moeti, Senator Jane Cordy, Prof. Obiageli Nnodu, Prof. Baba Inusa, Zakareya Al Kadhim, Mrs. Lanre Tunji-Ajayi, Beverley Fancis-Gibson, Biba Tinga, Dr. Stephen Boateng, Dr. Pradeep Mahajan amongst others and participating organizations included World Health Organization for African Region (WHO), Ministry of Health Zambia, Ministry of Health Nigeria, Ministry of Health Kenya, Sickle Cell 101, NCDI Poverty

Network, SickleInAfrica, Africa Sickle Cell Alliance, Pan African Sickle Cell Federation, Sickle Cell Federation of Kenya, East African Sickle Cell Disease Alliance, Sickle Cell Foundation of Minnesota, American Society of Hematology, National Marrow Donor Program/BeTheMatch, Australian Sickle Cell Advocacy Inc., SickleLife Ghana, Sickle Cell Advocacy & Management Initiative, Amplifying Sickle Cell Voices, etc. It was a 5-day event filled with educational, inspirational, and amazing virtual experiences with 243 participants from over 16 countries in Africa and across the World. 

Following the theme of the congress, Working to Overcome Sickle Cell Disease: What Next?, The ACSCD Chair, Dr. David Ajaere said “It is in our best interest to review the current state of sickle cell disease in Africa and impact positively on its outcome, therefore as we gather virtually as a collective, what is our response to the growing challenge of sickle cell disease in Africa?”. 

ACSCD Grand Patron and Former President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo stressed the need for stakeholders to work together and share information instead of working independently. 

The Director for WHO – Africa region, Dr. Matshidiso Moeti said “the global coalition on sickle cell disease is being established and we hope you will all join it. We are presently calling for more stakeholders from the African Continent to join this Global movement, from Civil Society Organizations to Private Sector and Government. The creation of an African coalition will further enhance and unify our collective efforts.” 

“Our goal is to bring ideas to the sickle cell community and push everyone to think about addressing the challenges in a different way. Videos of all presentations will be posted

on the Virtual Congress Platform (WHOVA) for participants to access in the coming weeks.” said ACSCD International Coordinator, Amb. Eddie Resphanto 

Event sponsors this year were Novartis, with grant support from Global Blood Therapeutics(GBT) and proudly supported by World Health Organization (WHO), Federal Ministry of Health and Stanbic IBTC.