Merck Foundation and African First Ladies mark World Cancer Day 2022 by providing training for 90 Oncologists from 25 Countries

Merck Foundation ( marks World Cancer Day together with Africa First Ladies and Ministries of Health through building cancer care capacity and increasing the limited number of oncologists in their countries by providing One-, two- and three-years fellowship, diploma and Master degree in oncology specialties for 90 African doctors from 25 Countries.
Merck Foundation makes history in Africa by training the first African oncologists and cancer care teams in countries such as The Gambia, Sierra Leone, Burundi, Liberia, Guinea Conakry, Central African Republic, Chad, Burundi, Malawi, Niger, Namibia, Zimbabwe and more.
Merck Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Merck KGaA Germany, marks ‘World Cancer Day 2022’ themed ‘Close the care gap’ together with African First Ladies through their Cancer Access Program to build cancer care capacity with the aim to increase the limited number of Oncologists and develop the first multidisciplinary cancer care teams across the continent.
Senator, Dr. Rasha Kelej, CEO of Merck Foundation, Most Influential African (2019, 2020 & 2021) emphasized, “We at Merck Foundation, together with African First Ladies, mark World Cancer Day every day, in a very special way and unique way.
That is by transforming and advancing cancer care in Africa by building professional capacity and improving access to quality and equitable cancer care in the continent.
We are making history together by providing this important training for the first oncologists and /or the first cancer care team in many countries across Africa”.
Despite rising incidence and mortality rates in Africa, cancer has been given low priority in the research field and healthcare services.
It has been estimated that by 2030 there will be a 70% increase in new cancer cases due to population growth and aging.
“I am proud that Merck Foundation has successfully able to increase the limited number of Oncologist in Africa by providing Oncology specialty training to more than young 90 doctors from 25 African Countries”, Dr. Rasha Kelej added
Launched in 2016, the Merck Foundation Cancer Access Program provides One, two- and three-years fellowship, diploma and master degree for African doctors from 25 African countries.
The clinical training is conducted in India, Egypt and Kenya. Moreover, Merck Foundation also recently started to provide scholarships for 2 years online PG Diploma in Cancer and Clinical Oncology from one of the reputed Universities of the UK.
“We are striving to form Multidisciplinary Oncology Care teams in many countries by providing training in Medical Oncology, Surgery Oncology, Pediatrics Oncology, Gynecology Oncology, Radiation Oncology, Oncology Nursing, Oncopathology, and Radiology Technician training. We are proud that we are making history in Africa through training the first oncologists and first cancer care teams in many countries such as; The Gambia, Sierra Leone, Burundi, Liberia, Guinea Conakry, Central African Republic, Chad, and Niger. Merck Foundation is committed to leading Africa to a better future through transforming the landscape of Cancer care in the continent”, explained Senator, Dr. Rasha Kelej.
The First Lady of The Gambia, H.E. Mrs. FATOUMATTA BAH-BARROW emphasized, “Merck Foundation is training the first-ever oncologists from our country. Having our own cancer specialists is very big for us and this has changed the cancer care sector in the country. I appreciate the efforts of Merck Foundation and deeply value our partnership with them”.
Merck Foundation through its Merck Foundation Cancer Access Program has till date provided training for 90 Oncologists from 25 countries which are: Botswana, Burundi, Cameroon, CAR, Chad, DRC, Ethiopia, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Malawi, Mauritius, Namibia, Niger, Rwanda, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zambia.

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