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Delight and optimism as second Mozambique frontline FETP cohort of 13 graduates

“I gained more practical skills regarding surveillance, field investigation, analysis, and communication of priority diseases in animal health, which will greatly improve the detection and response to diseases by extension workers, data collection, analysis, interpretation, and communication to higher authorities for decision making.   I recommend that more colleagues from the National Livestock Board be trained to improve the surveillance of animal health diseases.” 

Those are the reflections of Agostinho Poquelane Mirrone Júnior, a veterinarian in charge of animal health in Mozambique’s Magude District, as he joined 12 colleagues during the 11 May 2022 graduation ceremony of the country’s second frontline field epidemiology training program.

Similarly, Public Health Technician Alfredo Massingue, said the frontline FETP was very useful for his growth by enriching his knowledge as a health professional and an academic. “In my district, I am responsible for the epidemiological surveillance program, and what I will be able to add to my district after this training is conducting a case investigation and investigating other priority public health diseases. I will be able to use surveillance data for decision-making. It was an excellent experience for me, I feel honored to have been part of such a program.” 

From 21 February to 11 May, the duo and their colleagues drawn from the Ministries of Health and Agriculture, and various districts including Maputo province, were trained in basic field epidemiology and conducted over three sessions of theoretical classroom classes lasting 12 days and two fieldwork workshops lasting nine weeks.  

With the second frontline graduation ceremony, Mozambique has added to its skillset, 7 (53.8%) male and 6 (46.2%) female health professionals who have so far graduated under this FETP tier.

The ceremony was led by the Head of the Department of Health Training and Communication at the National Institute of Health Dr. Adolfo Vubil. Others who graced the function included by Dr. Zacarias Massicame, adjunct National Director of Livestock Development - Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock, and Dr. Joshua Fortmann of the CDC. Other officials came from the National Institute of Health in Maputo, heads of the public health department of the provincial health services, CDC and other partners, and district chief physicians.