Empowering the haemophilia community and strengthening care
“I am Dr Olivat Aimée Rakoto Alson, a full professor of haematology and head of the haemophilia department at the University Hospital in Antananarivo, the capital of Madagascar. I became interested in bleeding disorders thanks to my medical specialisation and began working with haemophilia in 2001, starting with biological diagnosis.
“Thanks to a strategic communications workshop provided by the NNHF, our team was better able to set objectives for the project, which led to the development of an awareness-raising campaign under the tagline: ‘Détectons ensemble l’hémophilie’. (Translation: ‘Let’s detect haemophilia together’).
“Educating people about bleeding disorders has a major impact on diagnosis and care. When people understand that haemophilia is a disease that can be treated, they are less afraid to talk about their concerns and can be diagnosed in case of symptoms. Madagascar is a geographically diverse island country with families living close together in certain regions and others sparsely populated. We approached our outreach visits by involving medical students from the area who understand the local cultural context in order to best get our message across.”
Madagascar 2021 highlights
Dr Olivat Rakoto Alson and Dr Fitahiana Danielle are leading the project team in Madagascar. In 2021 they worked towards the primary objective of raising awareness and empowering the community in order to raise the diagnosis rate in the country by 10% while strengthening care in the capital city and beyond. So far, there has been a dramatic increase in haemophilia diagnosis of more than 40% across the country.
- First haemophilia awareness session carried out in the remote region of Antsiranana and Toliara.
- Outreach visit to Mahajanga organised for 30 doctors, dentists and community workers. The project team took advantage of this visit to offer a medical check-up for people with haemophilia.
- Patient camp organised in Analanjirofo, in Eastern Madagascar, for 80 people with haemophilia and their family members.
- Training session held in Antananarivo for 40 local doctors and dentists.