NMIMR Holds Third Country Training Course

Prof. Abraham Anang, Director, NMIMR

The Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research (NMIMR) in partnership with the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) has organised an eight-week Third Country Training Course at the Institute under the theme “Enhancing Laboratory Skills for Infectious Diseases in West African Countries for Post Ebola”. The 2020 edition which happens to be the second training course, was to improve the skills of laboratory technicians for the diagnosis of infectious diseases in the West African sub-region.

Prof. Abraham Anang, Director, NMIMR, who chaired the closing ceremony, outlined the aim for organising the course. This he noted, was to provide an intensive and detailed training programme in modern laboratory technology at an African Centre of Excellence for Disease Surveillance and Prevention in Ghana. Prof. Anang disclosed that one of the most important priorities of International Cooperation based on human security is the improvement of the healthcare system. This according to him, is to prevent and manage various infections threatening the lives of people, developing their capacity and particularly securing a sufficient number of healthcare workers.

Prof. Anang noted that there was the need for the development of specialists in biomedical laboratory technology due to their critical role in appropriate diagnosis and management of infections. He indicated that the training course which started in 2018/2019 has enjoyed massive support from the Government of Japan in the provision of resources. He added that this year’s edition had eleven (11) countries participating namely; Liberia, Sierra Leone, Nigeria, Senegal, Republic of Guinea, Cote d’ivoire, Burkina Faso, Benin, Niger, Togo and Ghana. The training course specialized in three main programmes namely; Parasitology, Bacteriology and Virology.

Ms. Maki Ozawa, JICA Senior Representative

In brief remarks, Ms. Maki Ozawa, JICA Senior Representative, expressed her delight at the organisation of the programme due to the manifold benefits it is expected to accrue. She disclosed that participants from last year who acquired skills in managing infectious diseases in turn organised training for others. She added that the joint programme was the best way for JICA to contribute to Africa’s sub-region and enhance networking. Ms. Ozawa charged the participants to use the knowledge acquired to improve on early detection and proper diagnosis and continue to share their knowledge with others. She ended by expressing her appreciation to the organisers, participants and facilitators. She also pledged JICA’s continued partnership with NMIMR.

Mr. Hiromoto Oyama

The Deputy Chief of Mission and a Representative from the Japanese Embassy in Ghana, Mr. Hiromoto Oyama noted that the project was funded by the Government of Japan and implemented under the collaboration of JICA and NMIMR. He congratulated the participants for completion of the Third Country Training Course. He indicated that one main focus of the Government of Japan in the area of assistance is human security; adding that the basic concept of human security is to protect and empower each individual in other countries. The country joint course was therefore an example of such policy. Mr. Oyama recounted that the programme was designed to enhance the health system, prevent and manage various infections threatening the lives of people by offering training courses to health professionals including laboratory technicians, enhancing human security in participating countries towards emerging diseases such as corona virus.

The event continued with a host of carefully crafted valuable speeches from the representatives of the participating countries coupled with appreciation speeches from representatives of participating countries. Trainees were also presented with certificates.

Present at the ceremony were Mr. Theodore Ahuno, Administrator, NMIMR; Prof. William Ampofo, Head, Virology Department; Mrs. Gladys Agyeman Sereboer, Senior Accountant; staff, Members of faculty and students.

Cross-section of participants