Merck Foundation Partners with India to Build Healthcare Capacity in Africa

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Merck Foundation Partners with India to Build Healthcare Capacity in Africa

Merck foundation brings Asia and Africa together for the first time at their annual conference “Merck Africa Asia Luminary”

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Merck KGaA Germany launched their Merck Foundation, a non-profit company established in June 2017 at the Fourth edition of their annual “Merck Africa Asia Luminary” held in Cairo, Egypt. For the first time, Merck foundation brings Asia and Africa together in their annual conference, with the aim to explore more valuable opportunities for building healthcare capacity with a special focus on Cancer and fertility care.

Merck Foundation has partnered with India to provide training for future African oncologists and fertility specialists to improve access to quality and equitable cancer and fertility care in Africa. In partnership with Asian Academia and Maharashtra University, Merck foundation conducted their advisory board to define the strategy to scale up the Merck Foundation programs across Asia, through providing training and fellowship programs in India and Europe.

Dr. Rasha Kelej, CEO of Merck Foundation emphasized “I strongly believe that building cancer care capacity through providing training and oncology fellowship programs is the right strategy to improve access to cancer care in Africa since the lack of professional skills is the main the challenge there. Our partnership with India is very critical to make a strong impact in achieving our vision in Africa.”

In 2017, Through their Merck cancer access program, Merck foundation partnered with Tata Memorial center and Maharashtra University to provide one and two years oncology fellowship program for more than 30 Doctors from African countries such as: Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Ghana, Ethiopia, Liberia, Zambia, Sierra Leone, Rwanda and Guinea. Many other candidates will enroll in 2019 and the next five years.

Prof. Dr. Kailash S. Sharma – Director – Tata Memorial Centre emphasized “We are very proud to partner with Merck Foundation to achieve this noble cause, this clinical and medical oncology fellowship will contribute to increase the limited number of oncologists, hence improve the cancer care across the continent.”

Merck Foundation has also partnered with Asian Academia and Maharashtra University, to conduct their advisory board to define the strategy and scale up the Merck Foundation programs across Asia, by providing training and fellowship programs in India and Europe.

Prof. Frank Stangenberg-Haverkamp, Chairman of the Executive Board and Family Board of E-Merck KG emphasized “Merck is a value driven company and that is one of the reasons why Merck through its foundation is committed to support the social and economic development of Africa, Asia and developing countries by building healthcare capacity and improving access to innovative and equitable healthcare in the continent.”

During the annual Luminary Merck Foundation underscored the valuable partnership with India to build Fertility care capacity in Africa through our Fertility and embryology training program.

Dr. Rasha Kelej added “We have partnered with IIRRS (International Institute for Training and Research in Reproductive Health), to provide three months clinical and practical training for future African fertility and embryologists, many African countries do not have fertility specialists or Embryologists such as Sierra Leone, Guinea, Central AFoundationublic and Gambia. We are making history there in partnership with India.”

Merck Foundation has expanded their Cancer access program and ‘Merck more than a Mother’ campaign to more Asian countries such as; Nepal, Bangladesh, Cambodia, Myanmar, Sire Lanka, Indonesia, Malaysia in addition to India.

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About Merck Foundation

The Merck Foundation, established in 2017, is a philanthropic organization that aims to improve the health and wellbeing of people and advance their lives through science and technology. Our efforts are primarily focused on improving access to innovative healthcare solutions in underserved communities, building healthcare and scientific research capacity and empowering people in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) with a special focus on women and youth. All Merck Foundation press releases are distributed by e-mail at the same time they become available on the Merck Foundation Website. Please go to to read more and/or register online to interact and exchange experience with our registered members. Merck Foundation is a subsidiary of Merck KGaA Germany.

About Merck

Merck is a leading science and technology company in healthcare, life science and performance materials. Around 50,000 employees work to further develop technologies that improve and enhance life – from biopharmaceutical therapies to treat cancer or multiple sclerosis, cutting-edge systems for scientific research and production, to liquid crystals for smartphones and LCD televisions. In 2016, Merck generated sales of € 15.0 billion in 66 countries.

Founded in 1668, Merck is the world’s oldest pharmaceutical and chemical company. The founding family remains the majority owner of the publicly listed corporate group. Merck holds the global rights to the Merck name and brand. The only exceptions are the United States and Canada, where the company operates as EMD Serono, MilliporeSigma and EMD Performance Materials.


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