Closing the global gap—fifteen years of progress

The achievements of the Global Alliance for Progress (GAP) Program, one of the key WFH development programs, were celebrated on Day 3 of the WFH 2018 World Congress. The overarching goals of GAP are to foster partnerships between government, healthcare providers and patients. GAP also develops and publishes educational tools, and provides training for healthcare professionals and WFH national member organizations (NMOs).

“This multi-sponsored and multi-year scheme helps to develop sustainable national care programs,” stated Alain Weill, WFH President. GAP is currently operating in 31 countries.

At its launch in 2003, GAP set two decade-long strategic goals to close the gap in care for people with bleeding disorders. Brian O’Mahony, Chief Executive of the Irish Haemophilia Society described how 20 countries enrolled in the Program in its first decade (2003 to 2012). The objective of the second decade of GAP (2013 to 2022) is to identify an additional 50,000 people with inherited bleeding disorders, with half of them living in the world’s poorest regions.

“GAP has had notable successes in improving care for bleeding disorders in Algeria, Brazil and Serbia,” stated Antonio Almeida, WFH Director for Programs and Education. This sentiment was confirmed by Latifa Lemhene, President of the Association Nationale des Hémophiles Algériens. Prior to GAP, there was a lack of trust between the Algerian National Association of Hemophilia and people with hemophilia. Lemhene stated that GAP enabled the Algerian Ministry of Health to establish a national hemophilia program and initiate widespread use of prophylaxis in children.

The GAP Program is supported by funding from: Bayer, Biotest, CSL Behring, Kedrion, Pfizer, Sanofi Genzyme, Shire, and SOBI. The WFH would also like to thank the World Health Organization for its support of the Program.

Mitch Semienchuk, Editor, Hemophilia World Online, wishes to thank Georghia Michael. PhD, for her contributions to this article.