USP–Ghana (CePAT)

USP and Ghana officials cut the ribbon to officially open CePAT in Accra

USP–Ghana is home to the Center for Pharmaceutical Advancement and Training (CePAT).  Launched in May 2013, CePAT aims to equip regulatory authorities and officers, quality assurance and quality control professionals, manufacturers, and others in the pharmaceutical industry with knowledge and skills to promote access to good quality medicines. CePAT serves all of Sub-Saharan Africa—a region facing serious health issues and a proliferation of substandard and counterfeit medicines.

A USP Global Health Impact Program, CePAT fulfills USP’s core mission to improve global health by establishing public standards that help ensure the quality, safety, and benefit of medicines and foods.

No. 3 Park Avenue
Motorway Extension
North Dzorwulu
P.O. Box WY 1204, Kwabenya
Accra, Ghana
Phone: +233-30-2216888

News Updates

Upcoming Courses at CePAT

  • Good Manufacturing Processes
    • Session 1: July 6–17, 2015
  • Dossier Evaluation
    • Session 1: September 7–18, 2015
  • Pharmaceutical Quality Control
    • Session 1: November 2–13, 2015

CePAT Awarded ISO 17025 Accreditation 

One of USP’s core objectives in establishing CePAT was to provide a reliable resource for the testing of pharmaceuticals for regulators, manufacturers, procurement organizations, donor organizations, and nongovernmental organizations operating in sub-Saharan Africa. In keeping with all USP facilities, CePAT pursued the ambitious goal of achieving ISO 17025 accreditation, one of the pre-eminent competency standards for testing laboratories, within its first year of operation. Thanks to the hard work its staff and the staff of USP’s Global Health Impact Program, CePAT reached its goal, being awarded ISO 17025 accreditation in May 2014. This accomplishment validates the excellent work of the quality control laboratory, increases the opportunities for expansion of activities by the lab, and contributes to the overall sustainability of CePAT and USP programs in the region.

USP Marks One Year of CePAT’s Success

To commemorate the center’s anniversary, Dr. Ronald T. Piervincenzi, USP CEO, and members of the USP executive team formally congratulated the CePAT staff on their successful first year in operation. USP and CePAT staff celebrated the occasion with an informal reception that included facilitators, training participants, and special guests Dr. Alexandra Graham, LaGray Chemical Company, and Madam Bakie Remoe Doherty, Head of Chancery, Sierra Leone High Commission in Ghana.
Among its year one accomplishments, CePAT has successfully:
  • Conducted six international training programs in Dossier Evaluation and Medicines Registration, Good Manufacturing Practices, and Pharmaceutical Quality Control;
  • Trained a total of 125 participants from nine African countries— Eritrea, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, and Zambia; 
  • Conducted customized trainings in Management Orientation, Regulatory Inspection and Health Systems Supervision, cGMP Compliance Roadmap, HPLC Analysis, Dissolution, and Uncertainty Measurement;
  • Analyzed samples for the Pharmacy Board of Sierra Leone; May and Baker PLC of Nigeria; and Dannex Limited, LaGray Chemical Company, Sinopharm Ghana Limited, and Entrance Industries and Research Centre of Ghana;
  • Been selected by the West African Health Organization to test their antiretroviral medicines buffer stock; and 
  • Achieved ISO 17025 accreditation.

CePAT Gala Celebrates African Women, Global Health Trailblazers

The work of five African women, luminaries in the global health arena, took center stage at the inaugural CePAT Honors Awards Gala on November 8, 2014, in Accra, Ghana. Through the CePAT Honors Award, USP acknowledges the valuable contributions of women who have advanced programs in the global health sector and applauds their efforts to build sustainable programs despite myriad challenges in Africa. Their example empowers future generations of women leaders. 
In her keynote address, H.E. Lordina Mahama, First Lady of the Republic of Ghana, expressed her admiration for “five extraordinary individuals who have devoted their careers to improving public health standards for their respective communities, countries, and Africa at large.” Noting their individual achievements, she emphasized that, while each hailed from a different culture, all sought “to make systemic change in public health in Africa—to protect the lives of thousands, even millions of people despite challenges and roadblocks,” and inspired others to take up the standard as well. Mahama’s address was presented by Mrs. Joyce Bawah Montgari, Ghana’s Deputy Minister of Transportation. USP recognized the following individuals:
Lifetime Achievement Award Honoree 
  • Dr. Stella C. Okoli, OON, Founder/Group Managing Director, Emzor Pharmaceutical Industries Limited, Nigeria
A.C.E. Award Honorees (Acknowledge. Celebrate. Empower.)
  • Ms. Margareth Ndomondo-Sigonda, Pharmaceutical Coordinator, AMRH Programme, African Union‒New Partnership for Africa’s Development Planning and Coordinating Agency, Tanzania
  • Dr. Alexandra E. Graham, Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, LaGray Chemical Company, Ghana 
  • Dr. Dora Akunyili, Former Director General, National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control, Nigeria  [posthumously]
  • Ms. Esnat Mwape, Director General, Pharmaceutical Regulatory Authority, Zambia
USP launched the Women in Science Exchange (W.I.S.E.) program at the gala. This CePAT mentorship program will provide training, educational opportunities, and guidance to entry-level, mid-career female scientists that could elevate them into highly skilled positions and leadership roles.

CePAT, NEPAD Join to Improve Access to Quality Medicines

In June 2014, USP established a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD), a technical body of the African Union, to better strengthen cooperation and facilitate their collaboration in building African regulatory capacity and improving access to safe, efficacious, and good quality medicines. In acknowledgement of the MoU, NEPAD has designated CePAT a “Reference Center for Regulatory Excellence” (RefCORE), effectively institutionalizing CePAT within the framework of regulatory capacity-building in sub-Saharan Africa. USP and NEPAD are currently developing a proposal aimed at mobilizing financial resources to accomplish the activities outlined within the MoU, which include the sponsorship and facilitation of technical trainings, the development of a regulatory science curriculum, and the provision of technical assistance for Official Medicines Control Laboratories seeking to meet international standards of operation, among others.

CePAT Grads Urged to Lead Fight Against Substandard Meds

CePAT training courses received a positive nod from Mr. Oscar Cofie Bruce, Editor-in-Chief of Ghana’s Pharmabiz Newsletter. As guest of honor at a recent CePAT graduation, Bruce urged the medicines regulators and manufacturers who completed the course on Good Manufacturing Practices to lead the fight against the proliferation of counterfeit and substandard medicines circulating in African markets. This training, he said, equipped them with the tools needed to safeguard the health of their countries’ citizens. Bruce formerly headed the Pharmaceutical Society of Ghana. Read more about the Pharmabiz article-CePAT graduation.

CePAT, Global Pharma Health Fund Form Strategic Alliance to Combat Counterfeit Drugs

The Center for Pharmaceutical Advancement and Training (CePAT) and the Global Pharma Health Fund (GPHF) are working together to improve access to good quality, safe, and beneficial medicines. The two organizations signed a formal agreement that will strengthen human resource capacity to conduct quality control testing to detect substandard and counterfeit medications in Africa. GPHF is a charitable organization initiated and funded exclusively by donations from Merck KGaA (Darmstadt, Germany) that produces the Minilab®, a mobile mini-laboratory used by many countries with limited resources to screen for medicines quality in the marketplace, clinics, satellite laboratories, or ports of entry. This alliance promises to improve local capacity to detect substandard and counterfeit drugs through training at CePAT’s facility in Ghana on the use of the GPHF-Minilab®. Promoting the Quality of Medicines —another USP global health impact program implemented for the United States Agency for International Development—installs Minilabs® in surveillance sites of participating countries as part of a comprehensive medicines quality monitoring system. The Minilab® has proved instrumental in the early detection of substandard and counterfeit medicines in Ghana and numerous countries in Africa, Asia, and Latin America.

CePAT Services

CePAT will provide an integrated platform of training, education, consulting and laboratory capabilities that offers a sustainable, systemic approach to medicines quality control/quality assurance QC/QA in sub-Saharan Africa. Regulators and Official Medicines Control Laboratories, manufacturers, donor agencies, procurement organizations and others can benefit from CePAT services, which will include

  • Comprehensive training in the QC and the QA of medicines, including hands-on laboratory training
  • Training in laboratory quality management systems and good laboratory practices (GLP)
  • Training in current good manufacturing practices (cGMP)
  • Certification of laboratory personnel in QC procedures
  • Third-party testing of medicines for governments and global health initiatives
  • Consulting on supply chain integrity to prevent and detect adulteration of medicines

Follow the link for additional details on Consulting and Testing Services available.


  • CePAT Program Information: Dr. Patrick Lukulay, V.P., Global Health Impact Programs, +1-301-816-8166,
  • CePAT Donor Information: Reema Jweied-Guegel, V.P., Development, +1-301-816-8220,