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Global Health Security Agenda

Meeting on surveillance held in Tbilisi


People discussing in meeting room
Participants sharing experiences during one of the group work sessions.. Photo: Bente Faugli, NIPH

The first meeting in the GHSA action package on surveillance was held in Tbilisi, Georgia, March 26–28. The aim was to bring the partners together to discuss how to accelerate progress and collaboration to enable detection and response to infectious diseases worldwide. The Georgian National Center for Disease Control and Public Health organised the event together with the Norwegian Institute of Public Health.

The Global Health Security Agenda (GHSA)

The initiative aims to strengthen the ability of member countries to implement the core capacities required by WHO to fulfil the commitments under the International Health Regulations (IHR 2005), the legal instrument committed by all WHO-member states, enabling them to respond and detect to public health crisis.

More than 50 countries, international organisations and non-governmental stakeholders has joined the initiative.

In addition to the work in the surveillance action package, Norway contributes in the action package on preventing antimicrobial resistance.

A global initiative to strengthen global health security

The Global Health Security Agenda (GHSA) was launched in 2014 as a global effort to accelerate progress toward a world safe and secure from infectious disease threats and to promote global health security as an international priority (see text box). 

To ensure work progress in the agenda, ten action packages has been developed. The partners in the action package on real-time surveillance are working on strengthening indicator- and event-based surveillance systems to detect events of significance for both public health and animal health as well as environmental events.

– Requires a one health approach

 “Global health security and succeeding with detecting and responding to public health crisis requires a one health approach and multi-sectorial collaboration”, stated Amiran Gamkrelidze, the Director of the Georgian agency when welcoming the participants.

conference room with participants
Amiran Gamkrelidze welcomed the participants to the National Center for Disease Control and Public Health in Tbilisi, Georgia. Photo: The Georgian National Center for Disease Control

Technical experts from both the human and animal health sector from 14 countries participated in the three-day event together with representatives from inter-governmental and non-governmental organisations including the World Health Organisation, the Food and Agriculture Organisation and the World Organisation for Animal Health.

The objectives of the meeting were to strengthen partnerships and collaboration, share best practices and experiences on implementing and integrating surveillance systems and build capacity to meet compliance with international health regulation requirements.

Woman on rostrum
Line Vold, Department Director at NIPH, presenting Norway’s role in the Global Health Security Agenda. Photo: The Georgian National Center for Disease Control

Ghana, Malawi and Moldova, three collaborating countries in the Global Health Preparedness Programme, a five-year programme at NIPH, participated in the meeting as the programme is supporting activities to support implementation of IHR in the countries.

Line Vold, department director at NIPH, presented Norway’s role in GHSA and how NIPH work with partners in the global health preparedness programme to strengthen capacities to prevent, detect and respond to public health events.