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Home Industry News Novartis launches new access to medicine scheme in Nigeria

Novartis launches new access to medicine scheme in Nigeria

14th December 2016

Novartis has announced the launch of SMS for Life 2.0, an innovative technology-based healthcare programme that will improve access to medicine in Kaduna State, Nigeria.

The scheme will increase the availability of essential medicines and improve care for patients across the region by using simple, available and affordable technology in Kaduna State, Nigeria's third most populous region.

This public-private partnership will be led by Novartis and supported by the Kaduna State Ministry of Health and Vodacom, with smartphones and tablet computers to be used to offer medicines and increase disease surveillance.

Local healthcare workers will be able to track stock levels of essential antimalarials, vaccines, and HIV, tuberculosis and leprosy treatments, with notifications sent to district medical officers when stock levels are low, while also monitoring disease outbreaks and aiding professional training initiatives.

The original SMS for Life programme was launched by Novartis in 2009 and used cellphones to manage stock-outs of malaria medicines in more than 10,000 healthcare facilities in sub-Saharan countries.

Joseph Jimenez, chief executive officer of Novartis, said: "This is the first step in what we hope will be an impactful public health initiative, unleashing the potential of mobile technology and big data to increase the quality of care for underserved patients."

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