Abbott, Team Type 1 Foundation Partner to Support Diabetics in Rwanda

Abbott, Team Type 1 Foundation Partner to Support Diabetics in Rwanda
Team Type 1 Founder and President, Phil Southerland

Resulting from a good partnership with Rwanda’s
Ministry of Health, Abbott Global through Team Type 1 Foundation has donated
glucose meters and close to 12 million test strips to advance disease
management for people diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes in Rwanda for the next
four years.

Glucose meters and test strips are
important tools to help people manage their diabetes however, some living with
Type 1 diabetes are unable to afford meters or test strips. The FreeStyle
Optium Neo glucose meters and 11.7 million FreeStyle Optium test strips from
Abbott will provide access to ongoing diabetes care in Rwanda.

This donation is in partnership with Team
Type 1 Foundation, a non-profit organization pursuing a global mission of
education, empowerment and equal access to medicine for everyone affected by
diabetes.

The Government of Rwanda responded to the
global call to tackle the increased burden of diabetes by ensuring improved
access and quality of care is delivered at all level of the health system including
primary health facilities close to the population, said Dr. Patrick Ndimubanzi,
The Minister of State in Charge of Primary Health care in Rwanda.

The fight against diabetes and other NCDs
is a high priority on the agenda of the Ministry of Health and will continue to
work with all our partners to mitigate the impact of this deadly disease, the
Minister insisted.

“We are thrilled to bring this initiative
to life and help support the Rwandan diabetes community,” said Bernard
Brisolier, Business Unit Director for Abbott’s diabetes care business in
Africa. “By working together with the Ministry of Health and Team Type 1
Foundation, we will empower thousands of people living with diabetes in Rwanda
to monitor their glucose levels and manage their diabetes, which will help them
lead healthier and fuller lives.”, he added.

“It is a dream come true to receive this
donation from Abbott. Since 2010, the Team Type 1 Foundation has been present
in Rwanda through the Tour of Rwanda and our work with the Rwanda Diabetes
Association. We have seen the will of the people to succeed against the
challenges diabetes presents, which is why Team Type 1 has been so dedicated
for the past 10 years to advance access to diabetes care in Rwanda,” Team Type
1 Founder and President Phil Southerland said.

Abbott is an active healthcare provider in
Africa in general and in Rwanda in particular. Since the beginning of 2019, the
company has collaborated with the Ministry of Health and a leading NGO, on a
pilot program including the launch of eight second-generation health posts in
Bugesera District. The initiative aims at providing primary healthcare services
within a 30-minute walk of all Rwandan homes. Health post workers will test and
treat people, including pregnant women and new-born children for multiple
infectious and non-communicable diseases.

Collaborating with governments, healthcare
professionals, diabetes experts and individuals living with diabetes around the
world, the Team Type 1 Foundation contributes to bridge the gap to access and
education through sustainable and economically viable solutions.

According to the STEPS Survey 2014,
Diabetes prevalence in Rwanda is 3 per cent and 2,000 among the patients have
type 1 diabetes.

In this regard, the Rwandan vision is “To protect
Rwanda’s population from morbidity and mortality related to NCDs including
Diabetes”, so that Rwandans are instrumental in socio-economic transformation
initiative, for the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by
2030. These can be achieved through cooperation with different stakeholders at
national and international levels.

Rwanda has put different measures to fight
diabetes, these include; Community check-up and sensitization for early
detection, decentralization and integration of diabetes care to health centre
level, health system strengthening through capacity building and development of
normative tools, increase of accessibility and affordability of diabetes
commodities, medicine and lab tests, inclusion of diabetes care into medical
insurance scheme among others.