Chinese and African health officials adopted the Cape Town Declaration which outlines the objectives for future cooperation in health development on Oct 6.
This emerged after the ministers in charge of health affairs in China and African countries, met in Cape Town for the 2nd Ministerial Forum of China-Africa Health Development.
The declaration affirms that China-Africa health collaboration should be guided by African countries’ action programs/strategies, the WHO action programs, the AU Agenda 2063 and the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
The document acknowledges that the focus of China-Africa health collaboration is saving lives and improving the well-being of people.
China-Africa health cooperation should be strengthened around universal health coverage (UHC), the declaration says.
It reaffirms the importance of access to high-quality, essential health commodities, medicines and vaccines, as well as medical devices, diagnostics, and regulation of drugs and commodities.
The document emphasizes the necessity of taking actions against non-communicable diseases, preventable communicable and emerging diseases, such as Ebola Virus Disease (EVD), HIV/AIDS, TB and malaria.
At the forum, participants spoke highly of China’s contribution to the containment of EVD in West African countries, acknowledging that China was among the first to deliver EVD emergency support to the affected countries. In addition to financial support, China also provided medical materials, mobile and fixed bio-safety labs, vehicles, training courses and food.
China also dispatched medical professionals, lab technicians and public health specialists to affected areas. Some African countries also provided support to the EVD affected countries in the form of human resource, materials, labs, logistical support and humanitarian relief.
Dr Matshidiso Rebecca Moeti, Regional Director for WHO’s Africa Region, told Xinhua that China has been “a great partner” in Africa’s development, particularly in the health field since Chinese medical assistance to Africa has sustained long periods.
For many years, China has sent medical teams to many African countries and this has won the appreciation of the African people, she said.
Both China and Africa commit to implementing the Cape Town Declaration, as agreed in the Framework of Implementation.
Representatives from the African Union, World Health Organization (WHO), UNAIDS, UNICEF (UN Children’s Fund), UNFPA (UN Population Fund), World Bank, Global Fund to Fight HIV/AIDS, TB and Malaria, attended the Forum.