Pfizer cooperating with Egypt to digitise healthcare system

Doaa A.Moneim , Tuesday 1 Mar 2022

US-based Pfizer, a world-renowned pharmaceutical corporation, is currently cooperating with the healthcare authorities in Egypt for the sake of leveraging digital technologies and solutions for healthcare services in the local market, said Patrick Van der Loo, Pfizer’s regional president for Africa and the Middle East.

Patrick van der Loo
Patrick van der Loo, Pfizer s regional president of Pfizer in Africa and Middle East.

The company is also working on establishing partnerships in this regard and in discussions with healthcare stakeholders and the government regarding investing in the field, according to van der Loo.

Van der Loo made his comments in his answer to Ahram Online’s question on the presence of Pfizer in the Egypt during a media roundtable the company organised virtually on Tuesday for the region’s media representatives.

During the event, the company announced its plans to deliver breakthroughs to more patients across the region, aiming to impact more than 45 percent more people in 2022 compared to 2021.

These plans include continuing to play a leading role in the global fight against COVID-19 while having more than 50 product launches across Africa and the Middle East, thereby addressing unmet needs and critical public health challenges.

“As we continue to raise the bar within science and patient impact in the region, we are seeking even stronger collaborations with healthcare professionals, communities, and governments to ensure greater access to our breakthroughs,” said Van der Loo.

“In 2021, we reached more than 4.1 million patients across Africa and the Middle East. In addition to the 100 breakthroughs available in the region to support patients across six therapeutic areas — vaccines, oncology, inflammation and immunology, internal medicine, rare diseases, and anti-infectives and sterile injectables — we are planning to have over fifty product launches in 2022.”

On the company’s produced vaccines against COVID-19 in the region, Van der Loo said that Pfizer has pledged to provide two billion doses of its COVID-19 vaccine to low- and middle-income countries in 2021 and 2022 — at least one billion doses each year.

“We have fulfilled this pledge for 2021, and as of 6 February 2022, we have delivered more than 1.1 billion doses to 101 low- and middle-income countries. When it comes to our novel COVID-19 antiviral treatment (Paxlovid), we expect to produce 120 million treatment courses in 2022, depending on the global need,” he explained.

“In the Middle East, Paxlovid is now available in many countries, and we are currently engaging in discussions with other local governments.”

For his part, Yasser Al-Dershaby, Pfizer’s Vice President and the company’s Regional Medical Lead, said that the company generated data in 44 publications, 20 non interventional studies, and 18 clinical trials in 2021 across the Middle East and Africa, with plans to bring more Phase I and II clinical trials in the region.

“The company continues to lead new programmes in partnership with governments to create a nurturing environment for sustainable investments, including the cultivation and training of the next-generation of the workforce, enhancement of local R&D capability, appropriate technology transfer, as well as increased clinical trial efforts,” he explained.

In this repect, he said that Pfizer has invested $24.5 million to date, with an additional $33.8 million expected over the coming years to ramp up production.

In February, Egypt received a shipment comprising over 2,158,650 doses of the Pfizer coronavirus vaccine from the US government, according to Egypt’s Ministry of Health and Population.

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