Cologne/Bad Homburg v.d. Höhe. On October 28th Malteser International received the renowned Else Kröner Fresenius Award for Development Cooperation in Medicine 2021 on the topic of “Epidemic Preparedness and Response”. At 100,000 euros, it is one of the most important and best-endowed awards in the field of development cooperation.
The focus of this year’s award-winning project lies on the combating of numerous well-known infectious diseases that can cause epidemics – for example acute meningitis, the plague, polio, malaria or Ebola. “With the presentation of its humanitarian award EKFS honors a project that is comprehensively scaled and can be applied to any epidemic in any region,” explains Dr. Judith von Heusinger, in charge of medical-humanitarian funding at EKFS.
Dr. Jean-Paul Uvoyo Ulangi, Country Medical Coordinator of the DRC and Regional Health Advisor, received the award in Berlin. The 44-year-old award-winner has been working for Malteser International for 10 years. “We bank on an efficient, community-based approach. The targeted objective is to reduce the frequency of illnesses along with mortality in the event of epidemics, and to curtail the spreading of the pathogens involved,” explains Dr. Uvoyo Ulangi.
The money from the EKFS award is intended to be used to reinforce the resiliency of the healthcare system in preparing for and responding to epidemics. The extensive strengthening of local communities and the healthcare system is supposed to be supplemented through the “One Health” approach. This approach broadens the focus to include the health of animals and the environment. The goal is to improve the prevention and response to zoonotic and environmental diseases such as the plague or rabies.
Malteser International is the humanitarian relief agency of the Sovereign Order of Malta. With over 100 projects in 30 countries in Africa, Asia, Europe and the Americas, Malteser International supports those affected by poverty, disease, conflict and disaster, helping them lead a healthy life with dignity – without distinction of religion, race or political persuasion. Christian values and the humanitarian principles build the foundation of our work. For more information: www.malteser-international.org
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Roland Hansen, Head of the Africa Department of Malteser International, is available for interviews and sound bites.
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