Broadreach Health Care’s C.E.O., Ernest Darkoh speaks on the future of healthcare in Africa
CNN’s Marketplace Africa offers viewers a unique window into African business on and off the continent. This week the show interviews innovative HIV/AIDS expert Dr. Ernest Darkoh about the future of healthcare in Africa.
Johannesburg, South Africa (CNN) — A leading HIV/AIDS expert says it is time for Africa to take a “brutally realistic” look at how it combats a disease that kills thousands of people on the continent each day.
“In Africa, we will never have enough resources [to fight AIDS] according to the conventions of the West,” Dr. Ernest Darkoh told CNN. “So we can’t keep on looking to conventional models that work in environments that don’t match our context.”
Darkoh is the chairman and founding partner of BroadReach Healthcare, a company that is working with governments to develop public and private sector solutions to the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Africa.
“The developing world had been characterized by a lot of funding but often very little accountability for results of that funding,” said Darkoh. “And it’s important to deliver the results, because people are dying.”
In 2001, Darkoh helped develop Africa’s largest public sector HIV/AIDS treatment program, in Botswana. It was an unprecedented success and led him to start BroadReach with a friend from medical school in 2003.
Marketplace Africa spoke to Darkoh about his company and his vision for the future of healthcare in Africa.
CNN: In 2001, you were working for Mckinsey when the Botswana government brought the company in to develop its AIDS treatment program. What was your approach?
Ernest Darkoh: It really was one of the biggest public experiments of our times. In essence, the country of Botswana in the year 2000, at that time, 38.5 percent of adults were HIV infected.
That program got off the ground in a three-year period, and in a five-year period had more or less stopped most of the death from HIV in the country.
So I think it’s been a remarkably successful intervention demonstrating what is possible using existing resources and the power of public and private partnerships…[continue reading]
Image via Harvard Medicine