The University of Health and Allied Sciences Vice-Chancellor, Professor John Owusu Gyapong, has been awarded the 2019 Dominique Kyelem Prize for Dedication to Neglected Tropical Diseases Research and Program Implementation. The prestigious award, presented annually by the Coalition for Operational Research on Neglected Tropical Diseases (COR-NTD) is named after the Burkinabe medical officer and program manager of the Lymphatic Filariasis (LF) program, who passed away in 2013.
Professor J.O. Gyapong is recognized as a major player on the global NTD stage and is credited as one of three African program managers — along with Dr. Dominique Kyelem himself and Dr. Mwele Malecela — who, with support from the Liverpool School and funding from DfID, “really pioneered the Mass Drug Administration approach to LF elimination and the integration of LF programs with other NTD and public health initiatives.” According to the citation accompanying the prize, the award celebrates Dr. Dominique Kyelem’s personal attributes of “competence, effectiveness, collegiality, sincerity, and unquenchable determination and optimism.”
The UHAS Vice-Chancellor was selected out of 14 nominations submitted by over 900 invitees to the annual COR-NTD meeting, which was held November 18 and 19, in National Harbor, Maryland. Previous distinguished Kyelem Prize recipients include Julie Jacobson; V. Kumaraswami; Mwele Malecela and David Molyneux; and Alan Fenwick.
The Coalition for Operational Research on Neglected Tropical Diseases (COR-NTD) is a group of researchers, program implementers, and their in-country partners whose shared goal is to optimize control and elimination of Neglected Tropical Diseases.