Making an Impact: Supporting COVID-19 Response in 9 Countries

Astellas Global Health Foundation Funding Reaches More than 1,200,000 People in Need

Since September 2020, the Astellas Global Health Foundation has directed more than $2.75 million in funding to help organizations respond to the COVID-19 pandemic in vulnerable and hard-to-reach communities. The emergency relief funding was granted to help improve healthcare infrastructure and COVID-19 training and education in underserved communities. The Foundation supports initiatives which address barriers to access to health, build community resilience and provide disaster support. Funding directed toward COVID-19 response efforts helps strengthen humanitarian efforts in vulnerable communities and limit the widespread effects of the pandemic.

So far, Astellas Global Health Foundation grants have supported COVID-19 initiatives that have impacted more than 1,200,000 people in Nigeria, Ethiopia, South Sudan, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ghana, Kenya, Nepal, Venezuela, Honduras, El Salvador and the Dominican Republic. The inspiring organizations listed below rose to the challenge of providing critical support and services during a global pandemic within communities already contending with Access to Health adversity.

A year and a half later, the Foundation is pleased to share updates on these COVID-19 initiatives and the people who directly and indirectly benefitted from them.

When the COVID-19 pandemic reached El Salvador, the team at the Americares Family Clinic in Santiago de María, San Salvador, was able to quickly pivot its operations and programming to help ensure patients had access to essential primary care services. Thanks to the Foundation’s grant, the clinic was the only charitable health center in Eastern El Salvador to continue providing primary care services during the pandemic. As a result of the funding, more than 120 clinic staff members received specialized COVID-19 training around emergency preparedness, the team obtained sufficient personal protective equipment (PPE) and infection prevention and control supplies to keep staff and patients safe, they established new triage processes to ensure social distancing, and found new innovative ways to reach their patients.
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Academic Model Providing Access to Healthcare (AMPATH), under the direction of the Indiana University Center for Global Health
The Foundation’s initial grant to AMPATH was designated to improving mental health program access for 400,000 people in western Kenya. In 2020, a portion of those funds were reallocated to support mental healthcare efforts to benefit COVID-19 patients, healthcare workers and the broader community in Kenya.
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The Foundation has provided two grants to CARE to support COVID-19 initiatives for vulnerable communities. Funding in 2020 focused on supporting CARE’s efforts in South Sudan and Ethiopia. The efforts reached nearly half a million people through: distribution of personal protective equipment (PPE) items to health workers and at-risk populations; training of community healthcare workers; provision of home-based care kits for people suffering mild to moderate cases of COVID-19; establishment of psychosocial support for patients, health workers and care givers; and communication and community engagement efforts to help combat misinformation.
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International Medical Corps
With support from the Astellas Global Health Foundation, International Medical Corps was able to provide health staff in northeastern Nigeria with PPE, strengthen the infrastructure of a critical healthcare facility, and conduct training to provide staff with the skills and knowledge to protect themselves and their communities from COVID-19. This included screening more than 14,000 people for COVID-19; delivering training and retraining sessions for hundreds of health workers and community leaders; rehabilitating key water, sanitation and hygiene infrastructure; and establishing disease surveillance and coordination platforms that have reached thousands of people. The support helped enhance preparedness and reduce the spread of COVID-19 within the community
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Japanese Organization for International Cooperation in Family Planning (JOICFP)
Funding for JOICFP supported a program designed to protect the lives of women and girls in Ghana during the COVID-19 pandemic. The initiative integrated messages about sexual and reproductive health and rights with accurate COVID-19 prevention information, reaching at least 60,000 people within the community as well as training community health workers and supplying them with PPE.
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United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF USA)
The Astellas Global Health Foundation provided support for UNICEF’s Mothers and Babies in Good Care program in the Dominican Republic in 2019. This program has become even more critical due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which exacerbated existing challenges facing the country’s health system and disrupted key services for mothers and newborns. In order to provide additional support specific to the pandemic, a portion of the grant funds was reallocated to help provide PPE to pregnant and breastfeeding women and families and provide updated educational materials related to COVID-19 during pregnancy and breastfeeding.
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World Vision
As a result of two Foundation grants to World Vision, the organization was able to reach vulnerable families and children in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and Nepal during COVID-19. The DRC funding helped scale preventive measures and educational efforts to limit disease spread and support health systems and workers through training, educational materials and PPE. The second grant focused on reaching +260,000 vulnerable people, including children, in hard-to-reach communities in Nepal by strengthening World Vision’s COVID-19 education and vaccine support activities.
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"The Astellas Global Health Foundation is dedicated to improving Access to Health, building resilient communities and providing disaster support in underserved global communities."
Learn more about our efforts.