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Access Today: Strengthening Multi Sector Collaboration in Support of UHC

As the 72nd World Health Assembly (WHA) came to a close at the end of May, we are seeing continued momentum on important global health topics like Universal Health Coverage (UHC) and tackling the challenge of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs).


Walk the Talk
Access Accelerated member companies, partners and, for the first time, country partners from Amref and the Kenya Ministry of Health, kicked off WHA on May 19 by participating in the second annual Walk the Talk: The Health for All Challenge. A celebration of the importance of well-being, the event promotes physical activity as an essential element in bringing about #HealthForAll.

Access Accelerated Side Event
On May 20, more than 150 people from across sectors attended the Access Accelerated WHA side event, Strengthening Multi-Sector Collaboration in Support of Universal Health Coverage. In a dynamic discussion led by moderators Johanna Ralston, CEO of the World Obesity Federation, and Dr. Joseph Kibachio, NCD Division Head at the Kenya Ministry of Health, representatives from our member companies and local implementing partners took the stage to share candid perspectives on the challenges, successes and lessons learned from their partnerships in LMICs.

Muthoni Mate, founder of the Cancer Café in Kenya, delivered the event’s keynote address, highlighting the importance of connection for people living with NCDs (PLWNCDs), and to treat them as people rather than as their condition. She concluded by calling on global health actors to look at PLWNCDs through a more holistic lens whose needs go far beyond NCD rates and treatments.

Following the keynote, three panel sessions (details on panellists can be accessed here) joined the stage to speak about successes and lessons learned from partnerships in Ghana, Kenya and Madagascar. From these dialogues, several key themes emerged:

  • Integration is paramount: Successful programs are designed with partnerships in mind – between academia, civil society, governments, local partners/implementers, NGOs, and the private sector.
  • People- and community-centered care: Public-private partnerships must address the fourth ‘P’ – people. People- and community-centered care make partnerships more meaningful.
  • Healthcare is an investment: Investing in health is investing in people, their ability to contribute to their community and the future. Investment from all sectors is needed, and confidence in health systems increases with private sector involvement.

Thomas Cueni, Director General of IFPMA, closed the evening by recognizing Access Accelerated partners and implementers and the progress being made in their programs. He noted that the partnerships have encountered complex challenges during program implementation, but despite these challenges, Mr. Cueni highlighted the shared values and “willingness to share experiences from our partners and also our company members, both good and bad.” 

From left: Thomas Cueni, Dr. Joseph Kibachio, Muthoni Mate, Sarbani Chakraborty, Dr. Dennis Laryea, Fred Awittor, Dr. Fidiniaina Randriatsarafara, Dr. Luc Kuykens, Dr. Frasia Karua, Takanori Sato and Johanna Ralston


Access Accelerated in Action
As a part of the WHA side event, Access Accelerated launched, Access Accelerated in Action, Key Learnings in Program Design and Implementation. This resource is a collection of 19 case studies from member company partnerships to improve access to NCD prevention, treatment and care in LMICs. This resource serves as a starting point to deepen collective knowledge and further progress toward achieving UHC.

2018 Annual Report
The Access Accelerated 2018 annual report is now available. It provides an in-depth look at the progress made during the initiative’s second year. Read the full report here: Access Accelerated Year 2 Report


28 August 2019: Side Event at the 7th Tokyo International Conference on African Development
Yokohama, Japan
Pacifico Yokohama

24 September 2019: Side Event at the 74th UN General Assembly
New York, USA
Yale Club New York

For updates and additional details on confirmed speakers, please visit our website.


Please contact us at with any questions and follow the conversation around industry actions to tackle NCDs on Twitter at @NCDAccess and on our website


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