Merck Unveils 2016 Hypertension Award Winners

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By Dipo Olowookere

A leading science and technology company in healthcare, life science and performance materials, Merck, has announced the 2016 ‘Merck Hypertension Award’ winners to mark the World Hypertension Day.

Also, it has called for applications for the 2017 Hypertension Award, which is part of the Merck Capacity Advancement Program launched in April 2016 in partnership with African and Asian universities with the aim of building a platform of hypertension experts across the globe.

In Kampala, Uganda, Rasha Kelej, Senior Vice President and Chief Social Officer, Merck Healthcare emphasized: “Merck plays an important role in building diabetes and hypertension care capacity and improving access to quality and sustainable healthcare solutions in developing countries. Today marks an important day in the fight against hypertension as we mark the World Hypertension Day. In this context, we have announced ten Merck Hypertension Award 2016 winners.”

Merck invited medical students to apply for the “Merck Hypertension Award 2016” with the theme of “What the Healthy Heart needs.” Students across African and Asian medical universities were asked to submit a concept paper on how to improve hypertension awareness, early detection and prevention in their countries and how to encourage their society, scientific community, local authorities, media and relevant stakeholders to ‘think and act’ on hypertension every day.

The scientific committee received over 500 concept submission applications from universities in Africa and Asia and 10 winners were selected for the award. Winners from each university have been granted a one year postgraduate Preventive Cardiovascular Medicine diploma with the University of South Wales, United Kingdom.

“Merck Hypertension Award is another step in our long term commitment to support hypertension care strategy through working with local governments, academia and relevant stakeholders in building healthcare capacity with a focus on diabetes, hypertension and other non-communicable diseases in various countries in Asia-Pacific, Middle East, Africa and Latin America,” added Rasha Kelej when making the announcement of the winners during an event in Nairobi, Kenya.

Prof. Eligah Ogola, Vice President of Pan African Cardiology Society said: “We are happy to partner with Merck to implement their Capacity Advancement Program focusing on Hypertension in 2016. This combined diabetes and hypertension education program will contribute towards providing guidelines and clinical practice for prevention, diagnosis and management of these diseases and their complications. The objective of this initiative is to increase the level of knowledge for medical students who will work in the near future with patients to help them prevent, understand and control the diseases across the continent”.

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