Pfizer - AMPATH Oncology Partnership

Partnership objective

Create a system of Excellence in Cancer Care in Eldoret, Kenya by leveraging existing infrastructure and creating targeted programs. 

With Pfizer’s support to date, AMPATH has been able to treat hundreds of cancer patients who otherwise would not have received curative or palliative treatment. With Pfizer’s support to date, AMPATH has been able to treat hundreds of cancer patients who otherwise would not have received curative or palliative treatment. Copyright AMPATH

What are the health needs and challenges?

It has been estimated that in the next two decades nearly three quarters of newly diagnosed cancer will occur in Low Income Countries (LICs). Cancer is now the number one cause of premature death in sub-Saharan Africa. In Kenya, specifically, according to 2008 GLOBOCAN estimates there were roughly 22,000 deaths due to cancer and for a child born that year, the likelihood of developing cancer prior to age 75 was 14%. Currently, the resources available for cancer patients in Kenya are inadequate to deal with the present or predicted rise in the burden of this disease. For example, only two radiation facilities currently exist in Kenya and there is a particular need to develop an adequately trained workforce.

Description of partnership activities and how they address needs and challenges

AMPATH (Academic Model Providing Access to Healthcare) is an organizational construct led by the Indiana University School of Medicine in partnership with Moi University School of Medicine, Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital and a consortium of North American universities and medical centers operating in partnership with United States Agency for International Development (USAID). It takes a systems-based approach, providing comprehensive clinical care, prevention, health promotion, research, and training in Western Kenya. In 2009, Pfizer began supporting AMPATH’s efforts to develop a Center of Excellence in Oncology, an optimal physical structure and a comprehensive oncology program which focuses on developing cost-conscious and sustainable chemotherapy regimens, radiation therapy and continued education and training and clinical trials and research support groups. This model builds on the foundation of the primary care and HIV/AIDS model AMPATH implements.

From 2011 – 2013, Pfizer also partnered with AMPATH through its Global Health Fellows program, the company’s skills-based volunteer program.  Three Global Health Fellows were successful in working with AMPATH to assess and increase the efficiency of the organization’s drug management system, to improve drug procurement and stock management and to ensure the integrity of the drug supply chain.  

Summary of impact and forward looking information

With Pfizer’s support to date, AMPATH has been able to treat hundreds of cancer patients who otherwise would not have received curative or palliative treatment. The 2011-2012 goal of the program is to establish a cancer and chronic care facility which would provide both adequate space for administration, screening, treatment (including chemotherapy and radiation services) and palliative care. The facility will house hematology-oncology clinics, chemotherapy administration, radiation therapy and screening for breast and cervical cancers. The AMPATH Oncology program recognizes that a major component of sustainability lies upon its ability to train a Kenyan workforce to meet the immense needs of the cancer burden. A curriculum is in the late stages in development for Gyne-Oncology and AMPATH is working to expand this to hematology-oncology practitioners and nurses.

Partnership information

Company(ies) Pfizer

Partner(s) Academic Model Providing Access to Healthcare (AMPATH), Brown University, Levinson Foundation, Moi University School of Medicine, University of Massachusetts, University of Toronto, US Agency for International Development (USAID), Vrie University

Type of Partner(s) Academia / Hospitals, Government, NGOs

Therapeutic Focus Non-Communicable Diseases, Women and Children's Health, Other

Disease(s) Breast Cancer, Cancer, Cervical Cancer, Childhood Cancers, Children's Health, Hematology Disorders, Palliative Care, Women's Health

Program Type(s) Availability of Treatment - Financial Support, Health System Infrastructure - Development of Physical Infrastructure, Health System Infrastructure - Outreach & Medical Services, Health System Infrastructure - Training

Targeted Population(s) Children, Elderly, Health professionals, Men, Patients in needs of treatment, People with low income, Women

Region(s) Sub-Saharan Africa

Number of Countries 1

Country(ies) Kenya

Start Date 2009

More information AMPATH

Anticipated completion date Ongoing