President Hakainde Hichilema welcomed a delegation from the U.S. Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) at State House, led by Principal Deputy Director, Dr. Nirav Shah. The meeting marked a significant engagement to reinforce the collaboration between Zambia and the CDC in various health programs.
Expressing gratitude for the CDC’s longstanding cooperation, President Hichilema highlighted the organization’s pivotal role in supporting health initiatives in Zambia, ranging from HIV/AIDS to Tuberculosis prevention. Through the President’s Emergency Plan For AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), the CDC has played a crucial role in supporting Anti-Retroviral Therapy (ART) and preventing mother-to-child transmission of HIV across the country.
The productive dialogue between President Hichilema and the CDC delegation included an acknowledgment of the CDC’s technical and financial assistance to Zambia, ensuring the highest quality health outcomes for the Zambian people.
In line with Zambia’s strategic shift towards a private sector-led economy, President Hichilema urged the CDC to explore opportunities for local manufacturing of medicines and medical consumables. This initiative aligns with the government’s broader agenda of job creation, economic growth, and enhancing the capacity of the local workforce.
President Hichilema stated, “We thank the CDC for their unwavering support and collaboration in addressing critical health issues in Zambia. As we transition towards a private sector-led economy, we see great potential in localizing the production of medicines, contributing to both economic growth and workforce development.”
The discussions emphasized the shared commitment to advancing healthcare in Zambia and exploring innovative solutions to meet the evolving health challenges facing the nation.
The visit concluded with President Hichilema expressing optimism about the future of the partnership, emphasizing the importance of sustained collaboration to achieve robust health outcomes and economic growth for Zambia.