Osinbajo calls for coordinated approach against infectious diseases
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has called for a coordinated approach to tackle infectious diseases in the country.Speaking at the international conference on Global Health Security organised by the Association of Medical Laboratory Scientists of Nigeria (AMLSN) in Abuja, Prof. Osinbajo noted that with the world becoming a global village, and increased human movement across countries, the risk of infectious disease spread increased tremendously.
Osinbajo, who was represented by the Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire, said Global Health Security Agenda (GHSA) arose from a response to the risk humanity was facing from the emergence of highly infectious diseases to call for sustainable laboratory systems.
“With the world becoming a global village and increased human movement across countries, the risk of infectious diseases spreading has increased tremendously. Global Health Security Agenda raises to the core the need for sustainable laboratory systems,” he said.
According to him, ensuring global health security would help create a world free from infectious disease threats, which elevates global health security as a priority.He said Nigeria would continue to adopt and deploy the right technology in disease prevention and control in line with international best practices.
He recalled that Nigeria had been confronted with various outbreaks like Ebola virus, avian influenza, monkey pox, yellow fever and laser fever, adding that there had been significant improvement in prevention, detection and surveillance as well as response to the diseases despite casualties recorded during their outbreaks.
“Nigeria is a signatory to global health security towards securing the health of the population. Nigeria, among other countries, has made commitment to protect the world from global health threats posed by infectious diseases.“We have constituted and National Laboratory Technical Workshop to provide expert advice and support the coordination of laboratory activities in the country. Nigeria has also established a national reference laboratory in addition to a network of public health laboratories. We will continue to ensure implementation of appropriate activities towards securing the population,” he said.
President of AMLSN, Bassey Enya, urged the Federal Government to implement the provisions of the National Medical Laboratory Services Policy 2007. Enya observed lack of proper coordination of the laboratory system as a major challenge to disease outbreak response in the country.He stressed the need for the Federal Ministry of Health to structure laboratory services to enable the country respond appropriately and timely to outbreaks.