President Cyril Ramaphosa is expected to join Dr Patrick Soon-Shiong, founder of the multinational conglomerate NantWorks, LLC, in launching the NantSA vaccine manufacturing campus in Brackenfell, Cape Town, on Wednesday.
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The President and Dr Soon-Shiong will also launch the Coalition to Accelerate Africa’s Access to Advanced Healthcare (The AAAH Coalition).
This launch comes after an announcement made by Dr Soon-Shiong in September last year of an ambitious initiative to build capacity for advanced health care in Africa.
NantSA, a division of NantWorks, and The AAAH Coalition aim to accelerate domestic production of pharmaceuticals, biologics and vaccines that will reach patients across the African continent.
In a statement on Monday, The Presidency said that through the synergistic efforts of members of The AAAH Coalition, self-reliance will be accelerated around next-generation vaccines manufactured in South Africa for Africa, innovative therapeutics and pandemic preparedness.
“With the support of the Chan Soon-Shiong Family Foundation, institutes for infectious disease and cancer centres of excellence will be established at the universities of Cape Town and the Witwatersrand and the Chan Soon-Shiong Centre for Epidemic Response and Innovation (CSS CERI) at the University of Stellenbosch,” the Presidency said.
President Ramaphosa and Dr Soon-Shiong will perform a ribbon-cutting for the official launch of the NantSA vaccine manufacturing campus at Brackengate and also present the vision and mission of The AAAH Coalitions.
The event will be attended by a select group of invitees including representatives of government, academia and the biotech industry.