CDC, PEPFAR, and BD Partner in Labs for Life Transform HIV and TB Healthcare in Africa

On April 20th, in Washington DC, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) joined forces with the President’s Emergency Program for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), and Becton Dickinson and Company (BD) to release the results of an innovative public-private partnership that is transforming healthcare in four African countries where the burden of HIV and TB are among the greatest in the world. Under the leadership of Ministries of Health in these countries, this unique partnership, dubbed Labs for Life, was created to strengthen fragile laboratory systems in Kenya, Mozambique, Ethiopia, and Uganda, thereby allowing these countries to effectively prevent, identify, and respond to both today’s healthcare challenges and tomorrow’s public health threats. The first phase of the partnership, from 2007 – 2012, is a powerful example of CDC’s commitment and investment in laboratory expertise worldwide and is a model for future programs in other high burden countries. This partnership provides evidence that when done well, public-private partnerships can provide innovative solutions to pressing global health challenges.

The U.S. Global AIDS Coordinator, Ambassador Deborah Birx, MD, Director of CDC’s Division of Global HIV & TB (DGHT) Shannon Hader, MD, MPH, and CEO of BD Mr. Vincent Forlenza and the Chief of DGHT’s International Laboratory Branch, John Nkengasong, PhD were among those in attendance. Details of the partnership, including country-specific case studies, are featured in the April 2016 Journal of Infectious Diseases.


“One of the most remarkable outcomes of the CDC, PEPFAR and Becton Dickinson (BD) partnership was the reduction in transport time for TB testing from twelve days to two days. Results like that inspire trust in test results, confidence in clinicians and underscores the fact that strong labs save lives.”

-Dr. John Nkengasong, Chief of DGHT’s International Laboratory Branch



To learn more about this innovative public private partnership to transform laboratory systems throughout Africa, CDC’s Division of Global HIV and TB offers the following resources:


Journal of Infectious Diseases

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