Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt

OIE WAHIS training for Animal Disease Notification Focal Points (2016) English

The fourth cycle of training of OIE National Focal Points for notification of animal diseases to the OIE, was held in the resort of Naama Bay, Sharm El-Sheikh, in the South Sinai Governorate of Egypt. From 1 – 3 November, some 35 English-speaking participants from Africa and the Middle East took part in the three-day course, i.e. Afghanistan, Angola, Bahrain, Botswana, Egypt, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Ghana, Iraq, Jordan, Kenya, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, South Africa, South Sudan, Sudan, Tanzania, Turkey, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

In addition, the training was attended by representatives from one non-member territory, the Palestinian Autonomous Territories (PAT), and from the African Union (Inter-african Bureau for Animal Resources) with which the OIE is working towards full inter-operability between WAHIS and the African Union Animal Resource Information System (ARIS).

Opening address delivered by Dr. Magda Youssef, Head of the Technical Office of the General Organisation for Veterinary Services in Egypt, on behalf of the OIE Delegate of Egypt, Dr. Ibrahim Mahrous Saleh. Left : Dr. Neo Mapitse, Deputy Head of Department of the OIE World Animal Health Information and Analysis Department (WAHIAD) in Paris, Right : Dr. Ali El-Romeh, representing the OIE Regional Representative for the Middle East, based in Beirut, Dr. Ghazi Yehia.

 

The opening ceremony on Tuesday morning was graced by the presence of Dr. Magda Youssef, Head of the Technical Office of the General Organisation for Veterinary Services (GOVS), Ministry of Agriculture and Land Reclamation, on behalf of the OIE Delegate of Egypt, Dr. Ibrahim Mahrous Saleh. Also in attendance was the Member of the OIE Council and OIE Delegate of the Sultanate of Oman, Dr. Hadi Al-Lawati, along with representatives of the relevant OIE Offices in Paris, Beirut and Nairobi.

The OIE’s World Animal Health Information and Analysis Department in Paris dispatched four trainers to deliver the course, led by Dr. Neo Mapitse, Deputy Head of Department. The other trainers were Drs Lina Awada, Paolo Tizzani and Patricia Pozzetti. The training covered a multitude of presentations and practical exercises on the second version of WAHIS, using questionnaires, simulations and mock-reports on notifiable (listed and emerging diseases), as well as non-notifiable diseases (e.g. of wildlife) to make the training content user-friendly. Using their own laptops, participants reviewed the various approaches (and errors-to-avoid) in submitting immediate notifications and follow-up reports, monthly and six-monthly reports and the annual reports, for terrestrial and aquatic animal diseases. To this effect the OIE uses a training version of the online World Animal Health Information System (WAHIS) user interface. OIE Focal Points from Lebanon and South Africa were invited to prepare presentations on their experiences using WAHIS for the notification of terrestrial and aquatic diseases respectively, the latter with particular reference to the recent declarations of Epizootic Ulcerative Syndrome (or “infection with Aphanomyces invadans”) in freshwater finfish in the Republic.

Group photograph. All pictures © P. Bastiaensen (oie) 2016, except where mentioned otherwise.

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