Novo Nordisk Brings One-Stop Diabetes Care to African Cities

Novo Nordisk Brings One-Stop Diabetes Care to African Cities

Improving diabetes care and lessening the financial burden of diabetes treatment for low-income groups.

One of Novo Nordisk's Base of the Pyramid Diabetes Support Centres in Ghana.

Diabetes Support Centres in Ghana and Nigeria offer free diabetes screening in surrounding communities.

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Friday, December 12, 2014 - 1:30pm

CONTENT: Press Release

12 December 2014, Nkawkaw, Ghana /3BL Media/ - Today, Novo Nordisk opened its eleventh Diabetes Support Centre, improving access to affordable diabetes treatment in some of the largest cities in Ghana and Nigeria. The centres are part of the company’s Base of the Pyramid project to help improve diabetes care and lessen the financial burden of diabetes treatment for low-income groups.

The newly opened Diabetes Support Centre at Holy Family Hospital in Nkawkaw will provide insulin and glucose testing equipment at a reduced cost, access to trained healthcare professionals and free diabetes screening for the general public.

“Living on $300 per month for housing, food, transportation and childcare is very tight and poses challenges for people in the income bracket living with diabetes,” says Oluwaseun Ishola, regional manager at Novo Nordisk. “A lot of times, people with diabetes have to travel considerable distances to multiple locations to access care from the doctor, get test results from the laboratory and then another location to pick up their insulin. Today, the new diabetes support centre in Holy Family Hospital is a one-stop that houses these patient care services in a single location and at a high level of quality that both reduces costs and improves treatment outcomes.”

Similar to established Diabetes Support Centres in Ghana and Nigeria, the Holy Family Hospital centre aims to ensure a consistent and affordable supply of medicine and access to diagnostic equipment. Novo Nordisk works in collaboration with Palb Pharmaceuticals in Ghana and Roche Diabetes Care in Nigeria to help doctors better diagnose optimizing treatment and for patients to achieve improved control.

Undiagnosed diabetes remains a problem in both Nigeria and Ghana and the centres will periodically offer, free diabetes screening in surrounding communities.

“In Nigeria and Ghana, less than 55% and 25% respectively of people living with diabetes know that they have the disease and less than 10% have access to any kind of diabetes treatment, including insulin,” says Jean-Paul Digy, corporate vice president of Business Area Africa at Novo Nordisk. “This is the recipe for a long term disastrous medical and economic situation for those countries.”

In Nigeria, seven centres have been established including two opened in the city of Akure to mark World Diabetes Day on 14 November. Across both Ghana and Nigeria, nine centres went into full operation in 2014.

“Novo Nordisk is widely recognized as an innovative company and it is important to understand that innovation to us does not only mean innovative therapies and devices, but also innovative approaches to how patients can manage diabetes and other conditions,” says Ben Konate, General Manager of Middle Africa at Novo Nordisk. “This requires a permanent reconsideration of the status quo and a search for the idea that would significantly improve the life of patients. The Base of the Pyramid is one of these innovations and we are, in Middle Africa, very proud to be leading the way.”


About the Base of the Pyramid

The Base of the Pyramid project was launched in 2010 to improve the access to diabetes health services and treatment for people with low incomes. Novo Nordisk estimates that 46 million people with annual incomes between $1,500 and $3,000 are living with diabetes and have difficulties paying for their treatment. In addition to Ghana and Nigeria, Novo Nordisk is running Base of the Pyramid projects in India and Kenya. Novo Nordisk was ranked second on the 2014 Access to Medicine Index and the Base of the Pyramid project was highlighted for its innovative approach to improve access to diabetes care for the working poor in developing countries.

Read more about the Base of the Pyramid project


About Novo Nordisk

Headquartered in Denmark, Novo Nordisk is a global healthcare company with more than 90 years of innovation and leadership in diabetes care. The company also has leading positions within haemophilia care, growth hormone therapy and hormone replacement therapy.

Novo Nordisk strives to conduct its activities in a financially, environmentally and socially responsible way. The strategic commitment to corporate sustainability has brought the company onto centre stage as a leading player in today’s business environment, recognised for its integrated reporting, stakeholder engagement and consistently high sustainability performance.

Read more about Novo Nordisk’s Triple Bottom Line approach to business


Charlotte Zarp-Andersson
Novo Nordisk