A cohort of 37 frontline field epidemiologists has graduated following completion of their training programme at the Ethiopian Public Health Institute (EPHI).
This was in collaboration with the African Field Epidemiology Network, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA).
The trainees who include Public Health Emergency Management (PHEM) officers belong to Cohort IV of the country’s frontline Field Epidemiology Training Program (FETP). The trainees are equipped to improve public health emergency management activities and upgrade the district graduate frontline FETP coverage of the Oromia region to 50.7%.
The frontline FETP training has been implemented since 2016. It is a three-month in-service training aimed at improving surveillance officers’ capacity in collecting, analyzing, interpreting surveillance data and taking action. It is also designed at improving data quality, completeness and timeliness. Since its inception in 2016, more than 700 trainees from different regions have successfully completed the training. All the regions and city administration in the country enroll at list one cohort from their district public health emergency management office in the program.
Currently, there are around 72 enrolled participants from two regions (Oromia (38) and Amhara (33) in different Cohort numbers. Oromia is one of the biggest regions and with frequent reporting of emerging and re-emerging public health problems that need more frontline FETP trained district PHEM officers for prevention, timely identification and prompt response.
At the graduation ceremony conducted on 22 May 2021 in Adama, Oromia Region were the AFENET Horn of Africa Regional Technical Coordinator Dr Tatek Bogale, and the Deputy Director General in charge of Public Health Emergency Management at the Ethiopian Public Health Institute Mr Aschalew Abayneh. Also in attendance were EPHI’s Public Health Emergency Management Preparedness and Capacity Development Director, Ms Neima Zeynu and the Oromia regional public health emergency management director’s representative, Mr Birhanu Kenate.
Mr Tariku Takele, the AFENET Ethiopia Frontline FETP Resident Advisor and the EPHI Frontline FETP coordination team successfully managed implementation of the programme.