On May 27, the Instituto Nacional de Saúde (National Institute of Health) in collaboration with the Faculty of Medicine- Eduardo Mondlane University and CDC started the 5th cohort of the Field and Laboratory Epidemiology Program (FELTP).
The new cohort comprises nine residents from different provinces of the country. The cohort comprises 4 women and 5 men, mean age 35 years.
For six weeks, new residents will attend the introductory intensive course with the basic curriculum, discussion the distribution to technical areas to conduct the evaluating of Public Health Surveillance Systems, to develop project and protocols to strength the Public Health in the country.
The new residents had the opportunity to meet graduates that shared their experiences in outbreak investigation, evaluation of surveillance system and emergency response of Cyclones Idai and Kenneth.
The MZ-FELTP is a post-graduate in-service training program, based on the acquisition of skills, within two tracks: applied epidemiology and laboratory management. The program was established in 2010, with the objective of strengthening capacity in applied epidemiology and laboratory management, so that events of public health importance can be detected and investigated in a timely and effective manner.
The program is in its seventh year, having successfully trained 48 health professionals in the advanced course. At the end of the new cohorts training, the program will have trained 57 residents. During the first six years of the program, more than 40 outbreaks were investigated, 37 surveillance system evaluations were conducted and 39 descriptive data analyses were performed. MZ – FELTP residents recently participated in the Adai and Kenneth cyclone in April and March 2019. Surveillance activities were implemented for mass events and emergency situations. In addition, more than 100 oral and poster presentations were given by trainees at national and international conferences.
The MZ-FELTP has helped provide the Ministry of Health with the human and technical resources and operational capacity, to rapidly and effectively respond to major public health challenges in the country. The continuous involvement of key stakeholders is necessary for the continuation, expansion and ongoing sustainability of the program.