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Communique - AU-IBAR Organized Regional Refresher Training Course on Epidemiology and Validation Workshop on Cross-sectional Survey Designs for Priority Diseases in IGAD Region

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© 2014 AU-IBAR. Participants of the Regional Epidemiology Training Course.© 2014 AU-IBAR. Participants of the Regional Epidemiology Training Course.Introduction

AU-IBAR organized two important regional events back-to-back under the Improving Surveillance of Animal Diseases in Support of Trade in IGAD Member States (Surveillance of Trade-sensitive Diseases – STSD) project in Khartoum, Sudan from 9th – 18th June, 2014. The two events include:

  • Regional refresher training on epidemiological techniques to measure diseases in a livestock population from 9th – 14th June, 2014,
  • Workshop to validate cross-sectional survey designs for four regional priority diseases (CBPP, FMD, PPR and RVF) from 15th – 19th June, 2014.

The workshops were officially opened by the Chief Veterinary Officer (CVO), Dr Kemal Tag El-Sheikh of the Republic of the Sudan.

Refresher Training on Epidemiological Techniques

Twenty five participants from the eight MS of the IGAD region have gone through tailor-made training program that covered key epidemiological concepts and techniques. The purpose of the training course was to enable participants get adequate knowledge on key issues in preparation for the development of the cross-sectional survey designs during the workshop. The specific objectives of the training program include:

  • To equip national epidemiologists with up to date knowledge and skills for measuring diseases in a population,
  • To standardize epidemiological techniques that are applicable in the IGAD region for measuring diseases in a population,
  • To bring together and share knowledge and experience among epidemiologists of the IGAD region.

Validation Workshop

Delegates of the MS of IGAD region who attended the above refresher training course participated also in the validation workshop of the cross-sectional survey designs and data collection tool. The specific objectives of the validation workshop include:

  • To enrich and finalize the draft designs developed by a consultant for cross-sectional surveys of the four priority diseases in the IGAD region (CBPP, FMD, PPR & RVF),
  • To determine the sampling methods employed for cross-sectional surveys of the four priority diseases in all countries of the IGAD region,
  • To determine regional and country-specific sample size for properly understanding the status and risk factors of each priority disease in the region,
  • To enrich and finalize the draft questionnaire developed by a consultant for collecting data and information on the putative risk factors of the four priority diseases in the region,
  • To develop country level survey work plans including budget for undertaking the cross-sectional surveys of the four priority diseases.

Outcomes

The following are the main achievements of the two workshops held in Khartoum, Sudan as part of the STSD project activities:

  1. knowledge gained on key epidemiological techniques including the following among others: types of epidemiological studies, designing epidemiological studies, sampling method, sample size determination,
  2. procedures followed and data requirements for epidemiological study designs understood and harmonized in the region,
  3. cross-sectional survey designs for the regional priority diseases enriched and aspects of the survey designs were discussed and agreed upon for all MS:
    • o criteria for stratification of national herd population discussed and agreed,
    • o sampling methods suitable for the cross-sectional surveys discussed and agreed for all MS of the region,
    • o sample size for various stages of sampling units (herds and animals) determined in line with the set objectives of the surveys in each MS,
  4. development of country plans initiated for undertaking the cross-sectional surveys including estimation of the costs required for the activities

Vote of Thanks

The participants thanked the Government of the Republic of Sudan, the Ministry of Animal Resources, Fisheries and Rangeland Management, the Department of Veterinary Services for graciously hosting the two back-to-back events. They also expressed appreciation to the CVO and his team for facilitating the workshops and the hospitality received during their stay in Khartoum.

The participants also thanked AU-IBAR for its continuous support in addressing the challenges of the livestock sector in MS and effectively organizing the regional training program and validation workshop. They also extended appreciation to the resource persons for sharing their knowledge and experiences.