Health Excellence Awards In Cameroon: 11 categories of health experts recognized, Mental Health wins the 2021 award

2 December, 2021

The Health Excellence Award Ceremony took place at Djeuga Palace Hotel in Yaoundé on November 18 , on the theme “ Let’s celebrate health actors within the COVID19 Context in Cameroon”. Since 2017 this award ceremony has enabled health professionals to be recognized for their work. An initiative of the media group "ECHO SANTE" in partnership with The Ministry of Public Health.

This year saw the participation of the Ministry of Communication which has been active during the COVID19 pandemic

In previous years, the Award was only for two categories; Female leadership in the health sector and central services of the Ministry of Public Health. This year the award has increased to eleven categories. Indicate of the great effervesence in Cameroon's health sector

They include:

Four categories of hospitals;

1st category: General Hospital

2nd category: central hospital

3rd category: regional hospital

4th category: District hospital

Other categories ;

-Regional delegations of Public Health and public health programs

-Health sector in the military, national security and penitentiary

-Medical innovation, improved traditional Medicine

-Cameroonian diaspora, civil Society in Cameroon

-Special prize for retired public health specialist

-Health insurance

-Private health facilities


My participation at this event honoring the invitation I received from the president of the ECHO SANTE GROUP and the organisation committee of the Health Excellence Awards , Mr Joseph Mbeng Boum was an opportunity to reflect on the way forward and analyse a health system which is becoming resilient and robust albeit tremendous ongoing challenges. Three things captured my attention

- Mental Health

- Research in Traditional medicine

- Media implication in health matters

The winner of this 2021 health excellence award was Dr Laure Menguene, Subdirector of Mental Health at the Ministry of Public Health. Her leadership since 2015 when she was appointed in the Mental health department of the Ministry of Public health has changed and is changing mental health care in Cameroon. In a context where mental health has not gained the necessary political support she managed during the COVID19 to lead a team of dedicated mental health professionals (psychologists, mental health nurses, a psychiatrist) most of which were volunteers, to provide mental health care services to a variety of people and professionals affected. Cameroon was recognized by WHO Afro Rep Dr Moeti in this innovation in mental health care during the covid. Being involved in mental health activities across Cameroon this award was a great source of motivation.

One strong element of the positive impact of the COVID19 on African health care systems is that it has led to greater interest and focus on indigenious health solutions. In Cameroon the covid19 brought to light the incredible work of traditional doctors who during the covid19 developed effective solutions and alternatives to conventional covid19 managements. Some researchers in traditional medicine were also rewarded for work done in sickle cell anemia, and malaria.

Two members of the Association of science journalists and health communicators for the promotion of health in Cameroon (AJC-PROSANTE) were also rewarded. AJC PROSANTE since its inception in 2018 has created a new movement in the media sector through the use of scientific evidence and research to present health facts.

According to WHO ( Cameroon's health workforce is still heavily unable to meet the growing health needs and it is unevenly distributed. These shortages and inequalities are one of the highest in Africa. Low salaries, difficult work situations leading to growing under-recognized, under addressed mental health issues in the health professionals could be advanced as reasons which has affected the motivation of health professionals. I think the Health Excellence Awards has come to motivate this essential category of workers to work better for the development of Cameroon's growing and developing health system.

See you Next Year!

Best regards,

Didier Demassosso

HIFA Country Representative Coordinator Afro Region

MHIN-Africa Knowledge Exchange Assistant

Mental Health Expert

HIFA Country Coordinator For WHO AFRO Region

HIFA Country representative of the year 2014

MHIN Africa Knowledge Exchange Assistant

Member of the African Evidence Network (AEN)

Cameroon Human Right Fellow 2017

Tel :(237) 670-14-01-23/694-90-20-29


skype: Didier Demassosso