First lady challenges African scientist to tackle infectious diseases on the continent

First Lady Mrs. Rebecca Akufo-Addo has called on African scientists attending the Emerging Infectious Diseases and Biosecurity Conference taking place in Accra to do all they can to deal with the challenge of emerging infectious diseases on the continent.

The First Lady addressing the conference on Wednesday, noted that though the rest of the world have come our aid at various times when confronted with epidemics and other healthcare challenges, she believes the continent has “enough brilliant minds to deal with our own challenges” through innovative solutions.

She further noted that the 2013 Ebola outbreak which started in Guinea and subsequently led to loss of about 11,000 lives and almost 1 million infections on the continent should be a constant reminder to us that as a continent we cannot afford another such devastating outbreak.

Mrs.Rebecca Akufo-Addo also said that she is mindful of the limiting effect of political instability, food insecurity, mal-nutrition, poor health care, poor economic performance and lack of energy among others on Africa’s capacity to effectively deal with infectious diseases like Ebola, Yellow fever, Meningitis and Lassa fever however she stated that if stakeholders work together with a concerted and sustained effort and be proactive in providing cutting edge research and innovative solutions to infectious diseases then Africa will be on a sure way to addressing these challenges.

She stressed that “a nation’s ability to create, acquire, and utilize scientific and technological know-how, is now widely acknowledged to be a major determinant of its capacity to improve its people’s quality of life” therefore she commended the Global Emerging Pathogen Treatment Consortium for creating the platform to bring together scientist across the continent for an academic and policy based meeting that will address response mechanism to biological threats and increasing incidences of Emerging Infectious Diseases in Africa.

The 3rd African Conference on Emerging Infectious Diseases and Biosecurity taking place in Accra from 16-18 August, 2017 is a platform created by Global Emerging Pathogen Treatment Consortium (GET) in partnership with West African Task Force for Emerging and Re-emerging Infectious Disease Outbreaks, African Gong and Mothergold.

The theme for the conference is “Pandemic Preparedness in Africa. Biosecurity and Infrastructure in the wake of the Ebola outbreak” and it is jointly hosted by the Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research at the University of Ghana, Legon and the Kumasi Centre for Collaborative Research, KCCR, Kumasi Ghana.




The Republic News Online

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