Before joining the Healthy Heart Africa (HHA) team in January 2016, my career with AstraZeneca began as Oncology Brand Manager in South Africa in 1997, followed by various roles across South Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa in sales, marketing, strategy and business development.
HHA is a community blood pressure screening and prevention programme to help tackle the increasing burden of cardiovascular disease (CVD) across the continent. In countries where resources are constrained, programmes like HHA help enable national health systems to respond to the healthcare needs of all their patients, helping them to manage their condition more effectively so they and their families are able to lead healthy, productive lives.1
Through public, private and faith-based partnerships, HHA has so far helped to integrate blood pressure screening and hypertension treatment into routine care in Kenya, Ethiopia, Tanzania, Ghana and Uganda.
Since 2016, I have had responsibility for programme launch and implementation. In addition, my role involves evaluating new countries for programme expansion across Africa and other Access to Healthcare opportunities, one of the three priority pillars of AstraZeneca’s Sustainability strategy.
I am passionate about the huge impact the HHA programme is making on the lives of patients in Africa and about working with a geographically diverse team, each contributing through their own unique experience and expertise toward the success of the programme.
For me, the biggest achievement of the programme to date is the number of people who have been screened, diagnosed and treated for hypertension. By the end of March 2020, we had conducted more than 14.5m blood pressure screenings and trained over 7,200 healthcare workers.2
Under normal circumstances, these people would not have known they had hypertension and are now able to manage their disease and lead healthy lives.
1. Healthy Heart Africa. Available at: https://www.astrazeneca.com/sustainability/access-to-healthcare/healthy-heart-africa.html. Last accessed September 2020
2. AstraZeneca data on file. Numbers since programme launch in October 2014 up until 31st March 2020.
Veeva ID: Z4- 27077
Date of prep: September 2020