Eisai Co., Ltd. (Headquarters: Tokyo, CEO: Haruo Naito, “Eisai”) announced today that it has committed the equivalent of 1 million USD in aid towards various activities in response to the spread of the novel coronavirus infection in Africa, beginning with the activities described below. Through this support Eisai will contribute to mitigating the spread of the novel coronavirus infection in Africa as well as preventing delays in efforts for the elimination of Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs).


Support for Continuation of Activities for Elimination of NTDs

Eisai has conducted support up to this point for efforts towards the elimination of NTDs, including production of diethylcarbamazine (DEC) tablets as treatment for the NTD lymphatic filariasis (LF) in its Vizag, India plant and free provision thereof through an elimination program conducted by the World Health Organization (WHO), as well as proceeding with the development of new treatments for NTDs such as mycetoma. Due to the current spread of the novel coronavirus infection, particularly in Africa, efforts towards the elimination of NTDs are being severely influenced, including cases of delays in clinical development of new NTD treatments and inability to conduct Mass Drug Administration (MDA) in areas where NTDs are prevalent. In order to sustain efforts for elimination of NTDs in Africa, Eisai is planning support for local medical facilities with the cooperation of the Africa regional office of the Drugs for Neglected Diseases initiative (DNDi), a non-profit drug research and development organization which conducts the development of new treatments. Eisai has now begun provision of Personal Protection Equipment (masks, goggles, face shields, etc.) to core hospitals in Africa for research of infectious diseases where clinical research is to be conducted on treatments for NTDs.


Support for Development and Popularization of Mobile Health Platform

Eisai has committed a donation to Amref Health Africa (Headquarters: Nairobi, Republic of Kenya, “Amref”), one of the largest international Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO) based in Africa, which conducts support for health and medical care. This donation is to support Amref’s development and popularization of its mobile health platform LEAP in sub-Saharan countries including Kenya, Uganda, and Rwanda. The LEAP platform is aimed at increasing awareness and access to the latest accurate information relating to the prevention of various infectious diseases in sub-Saharan Africa, based on Amref Health Africa’s healthcare training pedagogy and content. In addition to disease information and group chat functions, LEAP features a short-messaging-service (SMS) and a two-way voice messaging service which enable use even in environments with poor internet. LEAP is considered to be useful for constructing relationships between citizens and healthcare providers that contribute to appropriate community response towards diseases. With the rapid uptake of digital and mobile-based technologies in Africa, it is expected that LEAP will be an important and useful tool in response to the spread of the novel coronavirus infection and prevention of infectious diseases.


Media Inquiries:

Public Relations Department,

Eisai Co., Ltd.




[Notes to editors]

  1. 1. About Amref Health Africa

Amref Health Africa (Headquarters: Nairobi, Republic of Kenya, “Amref”) is one of the largest Africa-based International Non-Governmental Organizations (INGO) currently running programs in over 35 countries in Africa with lessons learnt over 60 years of engagement with governments, communities and partners to increase sustainable health access in Africa. Amref Health Africa also incorporates program development, fundraising, partnership, advocacy, monitoring and evaluation, and has offices in Europe and North America as well as subsidiaries: Amref Flying Doctors, Amref Enterprises, and the Amref International University.


  1. 2. About LEAP

LEAP is a Scalable, Integrated Mobile Learning Solution that offers continuous training opportunities, peer collaboration, real time evaluation reports and strengthened supervision. LEAP employs mobile learning pedagogy to train and empower health workers using their mobile device operating from any phone (basic or smart). This enables health workers to learn at their own pace and with their own mobile devices while in the community, providing for both the interpersonal and community aspects of learning. LEAP was developed through a cross sector partnership comprising Kenya’s Ministry of Health, Amref Health Africa, Accenture, Safaricom, MPESA Foundation, and Mezzanine. So far, LEAP has delivered training to over 70,000 community health workers in Kenya, improving access to health services for approximately 5 million people. It is now scaling to other countries including Ethiopia, Uganda, Malawi and Senegal.