HONG KONG, April 27, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — A song spreads throughout the world from the Premier League fields; a seminar explores how civilian orgnanizations can carry out charitable activities for long-term effect in Africa; and a charity "relay race" starts at Guilin, China, where artesunate was discovered, and ends in the African continent, the front line in the fight against malaria…….
In response to the theme of this year’s World Malaria Day (April 25) – "Time to deliver zero malaria through investment, innovation, and implementation", Fosun collaborated with its member companies and eco-partners in more than 15 countries and regions in a campaign for a malaria-free world through a variety of charitable activities from April 20 to April 26, and help mankind build a healthy and better future.
Leveraging its innovation and global operations capabilities built up over the past 30 years, Fosun continues to seek better solutions and has partnered with non-profit organizations to help the world become "malaria-free". As of the end of 2022, Fosun Pharma, the company’s flagship platform in the health sector, has distributed over 280 million independently researched and developed artesunate for injection globally, saving the lives of more than 56 million people with severe malaria, the majority of whom are African children. The Fosun Pharma’s production facility in an industrial park in Abidjan, the economic centre of Ivory Coast in West Africa, was officially launched in November 2022, and it will improve access to pharmaceuticals such as artesunate in Africa and thus enhance the continent’s emergency response capability.
A Song Calling for a "Malaria-free" World Spreads Throughout Premier League fields, and a Charity Run from Guilin to Africa Begins
"Together we build a malaria-free world…" When British singer Sophia Saffarian performed "Better Days," a charity song especially created by Fosun for the World Malaria Day, in the middle of the stadium on the evening of April 25, local time in the UK, during a recess in a match played between the Wolverhampton Wanderers F.C. and Crystal Palace Football Club in the 33rd round of the FA Premier League, she whipped up the audience’s enthusiasm in the entire Molineux Stadium.
Tens of thousands of fans joined both the host and away teams in spreading the idea of "building a malaria-free world" throughout the world that evening. "We will be the generation to put an end to malaria." The players from the Wolverhampton Wanderers F.C. recorded a public service video to voice their support for the fight against malaria and to encourage more people to care about the people suffering from malaria on another continent on the same globe.
Four hours earlier, at 21:00 Beijing time on April 25, city landmarks in China million miles away from the Premier League fields such as Shanghai Bund Finance Center, Shanghai Forte Vitality City, Chengdu Fuyuehui, Chongqing Fuyuehui, Wuhan Fuyueli, Changsha Forte Starlight World, Suzhou Fuyue City, Quanzhou Xingguangyao, and Ningbo Fuyue City, displayed the slogan "Build a malaria-free world" in lights.
For the third consecutive year, Fosun’s landmark project 28 Liberty was illuminated for the global fight against malaria at Fosun Plaza in Manhattan, New York, calling on the local community to continue to care about global public health and support the "Zero Malaria" initiative. Since 2021, Fosun Hive’s overseas operations have been actively involved in the worldwide anti-malaria lighting campaign. This year, Fosun Hive expanded the campaign to three continents, with more than 10 platforms and property projects in five countries including: 28 Liberty in New York, The Court Hotel (Hiroshima, Kyoto, Ise) in Japan, Fosun Hive Capital in Singapore, Royal Exchange, Vantage, Smithson Plaza and Moretown in London, UK Gland Pharma and Tridem Pharma in India. The whole world paused for the noble vision of human health as Fosun’s landmarks around the world are all illuminated to show the company’s determination to join the worldwide efforts to fight malaria.
An international charity run has already begun. On April 20, Fosun employees and non-profit partners at home and abroad, sporting the slogan "Together we build a malaria-free world" on their T-shirts, have started a charity run, calling for joint efforts to build a malaria-free world. The route started in Guilin, Guangxi, the birthplace of the ground-breaking anti-malaria drug artesunate, and runs through the Huangpu River, West Lake, and Xiangjiang River in China, the United States, Singapore, Angola, and Mozambique.
On April 21, with the joint support of Co-construction and Co-governance Alliance on the Bank of Huangpu River in Xuhui District, Fosun Center on the Bank of Huangpu River in Xuhui District, Fosun Trade, Resource, Xingjia, Fosun Selection, Fosun Leadership Academy, Mint Health, fitt8, Fuheng Insurance Brokers, Wolverhampton Wanderers F.C., and Club Med, Fosun Foundation, together with six running teams from Fosun Pharma, Fosun Commercial Group, Fosun Insurance, Yuyuan Jewelry, Forte Industrial Development Group, and Resource Eco-Running League and Co-governance Alliance ran along on the Bank of Huangpu River in Xuhui District for the cause of "Building a Malaria-Free World".
"Many of the elderly members of my family still have vivid memories of malaria. They remember that when they get sick, their bodies experience cold and fever alternately, which is commonly known as ‘Dabaizi’ in the local dialect. After more than 70 years of efforts, China was certified as a ‘malaria-free country’ by the WHO in 2021. China is bow malaria-free but Africa is still plagued by the disease. I took part in the relay run to raise the public awareness of malaria and to contribute to the global effort to eradicate the disease," said a Fosun employee who participated in the charity run in Shanghai.
China and Africa Join hands to Advocate Charity Activities with Long-term Effect
The 16th National Malaria Day falls on April 26. On the afternoon of that day, representatives from government departments such as Shanghai Municipal Foreign Affairs Office and Shanghai Municipal External Publicity Office, international and domestic organizations such as Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, as well as many charitable enterprises, gathered at Shanghai Bund Financial Center to meet with scholars and experts on malaria and representatives of Fosun member enterprises at the "Seminar on China’s Non-governmental Support to Charitable Activities with Long-term Effect in Africa". They deliberated on how Chinese non-governmental organizations and civilians could establish a mechanism for charitable activities with long-term effect in Africa.
The World Malaria Report, published in December 2022, estimates that malaria killed roughly 619,000 people in 2021. WHO African Region continued to shoulder the heaviest burden of coping with malaria – 95 percent of all malaria cases (234 million) and 96 percent of deaths (593,000) occurred in Africa; and children under the age of five accounted for approximately 80 percent of malaria deaths in the Africa.
Increasing the availability of medications is one of the solutions to the issue. In fact, over the past ten years, China’s anti-malaria products and medicines, as well as its standards of anti-malaria practices, have been widely recognized, especially by WHO and the international community. The "China Solution" is helping developing countries eradicate malaria.
"Africa satisfies 90% of its demand for medicines with imports. Therefore, the establishment of a pharmaceutical logistics and distribution network covering sub-Saharan African countries and the construction of regional distribution centers will effectively streamline the system and shorten the time for the distribution of medicines," said an expert at the seminar.
Fosun Pharma has established sales networks in 39 countries and regions in Africa after operating locally for more than 15 years, according to Xiong Yanjie, a representative of the company at the seminar. "Through the distribution network of its majority-owned subsidiary Tridem Pharma, Fosun Pharma can distribute the anti-malaria and antibiotic products produced at its factory in Abidjan, Ivory Coast. This will enable the localization of the supply of conventional drugs in Ivory Coast and the other parts of West Africa, thus lowering the risk of drug shortages."
For Fosun Pharma, opening a pharmaceutical plant in Ivory Coast is a crucial step toward localized production and distribution of medicines in Africa. It is said that the first phase of the production facility is expected to be completed in 2024, when one billion tablets of oral solid dosage will be able to be produced and packaged locally.
To reduce the rate of childhood malaria infection, Fosun Pharma developed SPAQ-CO® Disp (sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine dispersible tablets/amodiaquine dispersible tablets in collective packages), a preventive drug for malaria in children which was pre-certified by the World Health Organization (WHO-PQ) in August 2018. As of the end of 2022, more than 210 million children in Africa have benefitted from the Seasonal Malaria Chemoprevention Program with SPAQ-CO products as the core drug.
Xu Fujie, Deputy Chief Representative of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s Beijing Representative Office, expressed her appreciation for Fosun Pharma’s efforts in the fight against malaria, and said that the Gates Foundation was sharing the Chinese experience in combating the disease with Africa, and hoped to work with Fosun Pharma to deliver more Chinese medicines to Africa.
To end malaria infection, experts at the seminar emphasized that prevention is more crucial than treatment and that, in addition to medicines, comprehensive solutions targeted at grassroots communities are urgently required. These solutions include improving environmental sanitation, changing personal hygiene practices, and setting up primary healthcare systems.
As a co-organizer of the seminar, the Amity Foundation, one of the oldest local foundations in China, introduced its community education and medical projects in Africa. It hoped to work with Fosun to build a platform on which more Chinese enterprises and social welfare organizations will be able to work in Africa, thus contributing to the common good of humanity.
Fosun International chairman Guo Guangchang said, "We have taken root in Shanghai and are working for the whole world. As a multinational company with its roots in China, Fosun leverages its innovation and global operation capabilities built up over the years when it actively works for public health and engages in charitable causes. In addition to bringing pharmaceuticals to Africa, we also bring grassroots experience in launching programs such as the rural doctor program in China. We will uphold our original aspiration of ‘Contribution to Society’ and help more people around the world enjoy a healthier and happier life. In the future, Fosun will collaborate with anti-malaria specialists and other resources to aid in the eradication of malaria in Africa and other regions with high prevalence of the disease, thus manifesting the "Fosun power" in the joint effort to build of a "malaria-free world".