Sierra Leone FETP graduates 6th intermediate level cohort
The Sierra Leone Field Epidemiology Training Program on 15 September 2023 celebrated the graduation of its 6th intermediate-level cohort, consisting of 21 trainees.
This milestone raised the total number of graduates to 90. The trainees successfully completed an intensive 11-month training program, commencing on 17 October 17, 2022, and concluding on September 14, 2023.
At the graduation, senior officials, including Ambassador Bryan Hunt, of the USA to the Republic of Sierra Leone, the Honorable Minister (Act) Professor Charles Senesie for the Ministry of Health (MOH), who is also Deputy Minister 1, Country Director of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (US CDC) Country Office, Director of the Health Security and Emergencies, and representatives from non-governmental organizations, including Country Lead, Metabiota Sierra Leone Country Office, were among the high-level officials who witnessed the final presentation of field projects and graduation ceremony.
Different senior officials from the MoH, including Directors, Program Managers, and District Medical Officers (DMOs) were also present.
Ambassador Bryan Hunt highlighted the investment of the United States of America in strengthening the Global Health Security Agenda in Sierra Leone. He appreciated Sierra Leone’s Government leadership and recognized the program’s impact on the country’s health sector.
At the same event, Hon. Prof. Charles Senesie, Minister (Acting) for the Sierra Leone Ministry of Health, applauded the graduates and appreciated the US Government and AFENET for helping the Sierra Leone Government build its public health workforce through this FETP. He said: “FETP is laying down the foundation and cornerstone of workforce development in Sierra Leone and is one of the core components of the National Action Plan for Health Security. As the world is still challenged with newly emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases such as the recent Coronavirus (COVID-19), nowadays, the importance of FETP is more evident than ever.”
The Sierra Leone Field Epidemiology Training Program (SLFETP) had its inception in June 2016 with the Frontline FETP, which was subsequently followed by the Intermediate FETP in September 2017. Since its inception, the program has successfully trained and graduated 69 public health professionals through the FETP-Intermediate. The trained professionals actively apply epidemiological principles across various sectors within the One Health framework. Their work encompasses human disease surveillance, animal disease surveillance, environmental protection, public health laboratories, ecological health, and a range of disease prevention and control programs.