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Mwanga Access Program Aims to Reach 35,000 diabetes Screenings by 2024

Mar 18, 2024
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The Mwanga Access Program, a collaboration between Non-Communicable Diseases Alliance Kenya (NCD Alliance Kenya), ROCHE Diabetes Care, and Medtronic LABS, in partnership with the Meru County government, has achieved the remarkable milestones of screening over 18,000 people for diabetes and training over 200 individuals in diabetes management since its launch in November 2022.

The program aims to reach 35,000 individuals by December 2024, bringing them under the umbrella of preventive and early intervention measures.

This program was initiated at a critical juncture given the prevalence of diabetes and pre-diabetes in Kenya: 4.0% and 15.1%, respectively, for adults aged 20-79. Additionally, an estimated 5,300 children and adolescents are living with type 1 diabetes in the country.1

“Roche believes in partnering with the local community in co-creating sustainable solutions to address the healthcare needs of the countries we operate in. We are incredibly proud of the Mwanga Access Program which focuses on creating a holistic care community empowerment program to enable improved outcomes and continued support. We, along with our partners NCD Alliance Kenya and Medtronic Labs, are committed to supporting this initiative to improve access to diabetes care for people living with diabetes in Kenya,” said Pedro Goncalves, Head of Global Commercial Organisation, Roche Diabetes Care.

Out of over 18000 people screened, the program has already enrolled 1,475 patients in its care program, with 539 confirmed as diabetic.

The robust digital tracking mechanism has achieved an impressive 46.1% follow-up rate and a 51.9% glycemic control rate for those found to have diabetes, demonstrating the program’s effectiveness in ensuring continuous patient engagement and improved outcomes.

The program will continue to provide diabetes screening and monitoring equipment and reagents to health facilities, support groups, and community health workers.

Furthermore, the program has successfully built a robust and sustainable model of community to increase the efficiency of healthcare systems.

A total of 60 healthcare professionals (medical officers, clinical officers, pharmacists, nutritionists, and nurses) were trained on comprehensive diabetes care, 20 health records and information officers on data capturing and presentation, and 106 community health promoters (CHPs) on basic screening, patient enrollment, follow-up and referral to the link facilities.

Additionally, 22 people living with diabetes and hypertension were trained in advocacy and public participation skills and advocated for effective NCD prevention and control and increased NCD budgetary allocation at the County level.

“The Mwanga Access Program exemplifies an innovative public-private partnership designed to address the gaps in diabetes management in Meru County. The program’s success highlights the importance of early detection, accessible care, and ongoing support for persons living with diabetes. We commend the commitment of all stakeholders in making this program a success and look forward to further expanding its reach and impact,” said Catherine Karekezi, Executive Director, Non-Communicable Diseases Alliance Kenya.

The program utilizes a community-driven comprehensive approach, involving healthcare professionals trained in comprehensive diabetes management, and community health promoters (CHPs), who screen and enroll patients and connect them to linked healthcare facilities. The program established support groups of persons living with diabetes and hypertension in the five linked facilities.

Support groups receive diabetes self-management education and are used for group counselling and self-care management education.

Eric Angula, Head of Business Development and Partnerships Lead Africa, Medtronic LABS, adds: “The collaboration and dedication of all partners involved in the Mwanga Access Program have been instrumental in its success.

The integration of digital infrastructure has enabled a robust enrollment and tracking of patients leading to the achievement of an impressive follow-up rate and glycemic control rate, demonstrating the program’s effectiveness in ensuring continuous patient engagement and improved health outcomes.”

The Mwanga Access Program’s dedication to tackling diabetes in Meru County serves as a powerful testament to the potential of collaborative efforts in improving public health outcomes. As the program continues its journey, it paves the way for a future where communities are empowered.

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