NTI | bio and Africa CDC Convene Biosecurity and Biosafety Experts from Central Africa
October 1-3, 2019 in Libreville, Gabon, NTI’s biosecurity program (NTI | bio)
partnered with the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa
CDC) to convene more than 40 experts from nine countries in the Central African
region to advance biosafety and biosecurity. The event was the second in a
series of workshops to advance Africa CDC’s
Initiative to Strengthen Biosecurity and Biosafety, launched during the
2019 NTI Global
Biosecurity Dialogue at the African Union in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
workshop was designed to help the Africa CDC Central Africa Regional
Collaborating Centre and its member countries identify and prioritize actions
to fill biosecurity and biosafety gaps, leveraging national and regional
resources. The effort builds on NTI’s
work to advance the achievement of specific biosafety and biosecurity targets
as part of the development of national and regional health security- action plans.
The workshop also advanced Africa CDC’s efforts to develop a continent-wide model
framework to support national biosafety and biosecurity implementation; an African
Union High Consequence Agents and Toxins list; biosecurity and biosafety implementation
guidance for laboratories and regulatory agencies; and a laboratory biosafety
and biosecurity training strategy.
participants included key staff from all nine countries across the human
health, animal health, and defense and security sectors. They developed
concrete actions to address biosecurity and biosafety challenges common among Central
African countries. Among them:
Africa CDC Central Africa Regional Collaborating Centre agreed to set realistic
biosecurity and biosafety capacity building goals for the region and track
progress. They also agreed to request that
Member States nominate a multi-sectoral body for reporting on successes and
challenges in achieving these goals and apply
regional solutions to common challenges and facilitate sharing of lessons
Africa CDC Central Africa Regional Collaborating Centre pledged to fill
recognized biosecurity training gaps by coordinating a regional effort, through
partnerships with Africa CDC’s Institute for Workforce Development, Columbia
University, and the Association of Public Health Laboratories, to adapt
existing biosecurity and biosafety training curricula to the Central African
from Central African Member States who participated in the meeting agreed to nominate
representative(s) of the region to participate in the African Union Biorisk
Management Legislative Framework development process and sensitize national and
regional leadership and technical experts to the Framework to enable timely
buy-in once it is endorsed by the African Union.
workshop was a collaboration with the African Union, the African Centre for
Disease Control and Prevention, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and
Prevention, and the Defense Threat Reduction Agency at the U.S. Department of
more about the Global Biosecurity Dialogue Project here.
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