Case Study: Developing Health Systems Resources

Strengthening Diagnostics in Africa, Roche


One of Africa’s greatest challenges is having enough trained healthcare workers. To address the lack of trained diagnostic workers and laboratory capacity, we opened the Roche Scientific Campus in Johannesburg, South Africa, in 2012.

The training center provides:

  • hands-on, certified training courses for lab technologists and engineers,
  • general lab management training for managers and policy makers, and
  • education on health and scientific topics for healthcare professionals and scientists.

Training is conducted by certified trainers and experts, in collaboration with local and international organizations.

Lessons Learned?

To address scale, in 2012 Roche and the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) formed a five-year partnership to strengthen training for diagnostics workers in Africa. The goal is to improve laboratory services (including certification courses for pathologists), molecular diagnostics, and quality management.

The partnership will include collaboration with the African Society for Laboratory Medicine, increasing the sustainability of the partnership.

Results to Date?

To date, the campus has hosted more than 170 courses, covering more than 500 training days for around 850 participants. The facility also regularly hosts HIV clinicians and meetings on various topics.

The rollout of the PEPFAR-Roche partnership will begin with two pilot courses: a five-day laboratory budgeting course, followed by a two-week course on method validation and quality control.

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