GIS - 04 December, 2015: Strengthening disease surveillance systems from community to national level, as well as the management of outbreaks and laboratory diagnostic capacity is one of the main resolutions endorsed by the East, Central and Southern Africa-Health Community (ECSA-HC) as the 62nd Health Ministers Conference closed today at InterContinental Mauritius Resort, Balaclava.
In his closing remarks, the Minister of Health and Quality of Life, Mr Anil Gayan said that the resolution paves the way for more effective regional collaboration in the surveillance and control of communicable diseases in the light of the many epidemics that have occurred in the last decades including Ebola virus, dengue, and chikungunya, among others.
According to the Minister, the theme of the Conference, ‘Transitioning from Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) to Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)’, has been successfully addressed. Thus, resolutions relating to that transition urge Member States to use the successes in efforts towards the MDGs as building blocks to formulate new health policies and prepare health sector development plans in line with the SDGs framework. Recalling that health is critical for the development and prosperity of any country, Mr Gayan invited senior officials of ECSA to integrate health as a major component of their national strategies.
The Minister also welcomed the establishment of the ECSA College of Physicians with the objectives of supporting career development of health professionals in the region, as well as increase the quality and quantity of services offered by the physicians in the region. Minister Gayan in addition proposed to other Member States the possibility of recruiting qualified doctors from Mauritius in line with the Community’s resolution to facilitate the sharing of expertise within the region through mechanisms such as Government to Government agreement.
For his part, the Director General of ECSA, Professor Yoswa M. Dambisya, commended Mauritius for the successful organisation of the 62nd ECSA-HC Health Ministers Conference. He stressed that the Conference and related technical sessions enabled fruitful discussions with effective knowledge sharing and exchange of ideas and experiences among Member States and partners in health development in the region.
At the end of the regional meeting, the chairmanship of the ECSA-HC was passed to the Kingdom of Swaziland, where the next Health Ministers Conference will be held in 2016.
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