Tuesday, July 16, 2024
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HomeNewsCaribbean NewsCARPHA - The UWI collaborate on Capacity Building Entomology Workshop

CARPHA – The UWI collaborate on Capacity Building Entomology Workshop

PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad –  The Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) collaborated with The School of Veterinary Medicine at the University of the West Indies (UWI) for a three-day workshop titled “Identification of Arthropod Vectors of Diseases of Public Health, Animal Health, and Zoonotic Importance,” held from June 10 th – 12th, 2024, at the UWI School of Veterinary Medicine campus, Mt Hope, Trinidad and Tobago.

The intensive workshop aimed to build the capacity of Public Health Specialists and Veterinarians, from seven CARPHA member states, to identify common arthropod vectors under the One Health Framework.

With Neglected Infectious Diseases like dengue fever, Chagas disease, and leishmaniasis, as well as Transboundary Animal Diseases like African Swine Fever posing significant public health and food security challenges to CARPHA Member States, enhancing the identification and control of these vectors has never been more critical.

Dr Joy St John, executive director of CARPHA, highlighted the importance of this initiative while presenting certificates to the twenty-six workshop participants.

“The introduction of Animal Diseases, such as diseases caused by the Avian Influenza virus, continues to pose a threat to the livelihoods of poultry farmers, results in food insecurity and economic instability of many countries, as well as heightens the threat of the development of zoonoses which threaten human health. This workshop is the kind of intervention that will ensure the security of the region. CARPHA and The UWI are keen to implement activities that address the threats to One Health safety and security.”

Dr Karla Georges, director of the School of Veterinary Medicine at The UWI St Augustine, added: “As a region we have the capacity to train our professionals and this workshop allowed further engagement and development of strong links among local, regional and international experts under the One Health umbrella.”

Prof. Hariharan Seetharaman, Dean of the Faculty of Medical Sciences at The UWI, and Dr Lisa Indar, director of Surveillance, Diseases Prevention and Control at CARPHA, also attended the opening ceremony in support of this initiative.

The workshop was facilitated by regional and international experts from CARPHA, The UWI, the Oswaldo Cruz Foundation (Brazil), The University of Delaware, The University of Concepción (Chile), and CIRAD. Fieldwork was conducted at the UWI Field Station and  Maracas St Joseph.

Participants included policymakers, representatives from ministries of health and agriculture, researchers, and other public health professionals.

This regional entomology workshop was funded with support from the European Union under the 11th EDF Programme, supporting health system strengthening for the prevention and control of outbreaks of Zika and other mosquito-borne diseases in the Caribbean, Boehringer Ingelheim, Centre de coopé ration internationale en recherche agronomique pour le développement (CIRAD), the CaribVET network and CaribGREEN.

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