Once written off as the "hopeless continent," Africa was home to 6 of the world's 10 fastest growing economies in the first decade of 21st century and is today being eyed not only for its mineral wealth but as a market of 300 million, and counting, middle-class consumers.
What impact is Africa's economic, political and social transformation, and the end of old dependency paradigms, having on the continent's health challenges, and vice versa? Is it time to revisit priorities? What new approaches are on the horizon?
The US PEPFAR program has been a phenomenal success in helping Africa come to grips with the HIV AIDS epidemic. Is it still needed and if so what would be the impact of scaling back? What advances are South Africa and other African countries themselves making in treatment and prevention strategies?
Rising affluence is associated with an increase in cancer and other non-communicable diseases (NCD's). It is estimated that the incidence of cancer in sub-Saharan Africa will double to 2 million cases per year by the end of the next decade. How can this be addressed effectively?
Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTD's) like ascariasis (roundworm), elephantiasis and bilharzia have taken a particularly heavy toll in Africa absent the economic incentive for researching and developing treatments. What are the prospects for dealing with these diseases in the new environment?
These are among the questions that will be addressed at a seminar convened by the South Africa's Ambassador to the US Ebrahim Rasool in partnership with Houston's University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Centre, the International Partnership for Microbicides and the Global Network for Neglected Tropical Diseases.
Speakers and panelists include leading practitioners, researchers and policymakers from the US and Africa.
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