Alumni of Ghana FELTP Receive Presidential Honours Award for Distinguished Service in responding to COVID-19 Pandemic
The Ghana Field Epidemiology and Laboratory Training Programme was established in October 2007. The programme evolved from a collaboration with the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and African Field Epidemiology Network (AFENET), through a cooperative agreement with the University of Ghana, School of Public Health, and Ghana Health Service. Currently, it serves as a sub-regional resource centre for training Field Epidemiologists from English speaking West African countries (except Nigeria) with all the tiers. A total of 566 have graduated from the frontline, 106 from the intermediate and 166 from the advanced.
Right from the onset of COVID-19, residents and alumni of Ghana FELTP were extensively involved in the response across various thematic areas in Ghana and other countries in the sub-region. Alumni and faculty are members of the national COVID-19 response team who developed the National Response Plan and members of the National Technical Coordinating Committee. Areas of support include but are not limited to development of SOPs, facilitation of capacity building trainings, contact tracing, case management, field supervision, point of entry screening, community sensitization and risk communication, resource mobilization, enhanced surveillance, and laboratory testing.
Alumni of the programme also provide leadership and management of key laboratory facilities in the country such as the National Public Health Reference Laboratory, zonal public health laboratories, and the advanced molecular laboratory at Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research.
At the 2023 National Honours and Awards ceremony, held on Tuesday 14 March 2023, the president of the Republic of Ghana, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, honoured 16 alumni of the Ghana FELTP (Frontline: 5, Intermediate: 6, Advanced: 5) for their distinguished service in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic in Ghana. Citing difficulties at the height of the pandemic, President Akufo-Addo remarked that the selflessness and commitment demonstrated by the officers helped saved many lives, and Ghana is indeed indebted to them.
Table 1 shows the names of award recipients, tiers and description of awards.
|No.||Name||Tier||Description of Award|
|1||Ignatius Aklikpe||Frontline||Frontline COVID-19 Operational excellence in Laboratory Investigations Award|
|2||Simon Gbene||Frontline||Frontline COVID-19 Operational excellence in Laboratory Investigations Award|
|3||Mercy Nkrumah||Frontline||Grand Medal: COVID-19 operational excellence in Surveillance Award|
|4||Francis Cudjoe||Frontline||Frontline COVID-19 operational excellence in Surveillance Award|
|5||Clement Avoka||Frontline||Frontline COVID-19 operational excellence in Surveillance Award|
|6||Salaam Dam-Park Laar||Intermediate||Frontline COVID-19 operational excellence in Case investigation and contact tracing Award|
|7||Peter Paul Anekor||Intermediate||Frontline Hero of COVID 19|
|8||Simon Aabalekuu||Intermediate||Frontline COVID-19 operational excellence in Case investigation, contact tracing and supervision Award|
|9||Adama Saibu||Intermediate||Frontline COVID-19 operational excellence in Surveillance Award|
|10||Thomas Kwabla Vigbedor||Intermediate||Frontline COVID-19 operational excellence in leadership and Surveillance Award|
|11||Emmanuel Riverson||Intermediate||Frontline COVID-19 Operational excellence in Laboratory Investigations Award|
|12||Ebenezer Kofi Mensah||Advanced||Grand Medal: Frontline COVID-19 Operational excellence in Laboratory Investigations Award|
|13||Seth Kwame Baffoe||Advanced||Frontline COVID-19 Operational excellence in contact tracing, case management and data management Award|
|14||George Kuma Kumaloo||Advanced||Grand Medal: COVID-19 Operational excellence in Laboratory Investigations Award|
|15||Mr. Jacob Arthur-Quarm||Advanced||Laboratory consultant for the construction of the Infectious Disease Treatment Centre|
|16||Dr. Samuel Otu- Nyarko||Advanced||Grand Medal: COVID-19 Operational excellence in case management Award|