The ERFAN Secretariat is closely monitoring the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19). The health and safety of the colleagues and staff is a top priority. For this reason, in accordance with the coordinators of the CBPP Working Group and the participants in the TC, it is inevitable that the activities scheduled from 20 to 24 April 2020 in Gaborone (Botswana), be postponed to a later date. The new date will fall in the second half of the year 2020.
The Enhancing Research for Africa Network (ERFAN) aims to support the development of the aspiring and existing World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) Reference Centres/Laboratories in the Southern African Development Community (SADC), in their specific areas of expertise concerning animal health and welfare. A priority area that has been identified according to the terms of reference of the Reference Laboratories is the ability to organize inter-laboratory proficiency testing. For the proficiency schemes to be valid and widely accepted they should be accredited to or at least be shown to conform to the ISO/IEC 17043 Standard, “Conformity assessment – General requirements for proficiency testing”.
Although laboratories in the SADC region are accustomed to sharing samples for the purposes of inter-laboratory comparisons these activities are usually not performed according to the ISO/IEC 17043 Standard and the laboratories are not accredited for this function. Training is therefore necessary to improve the standard of these inter-laboratory comparisons especially for those laboratories which are recognized reference centres.
Capacity building for the conduct of inter-laboratory proficiency testing according to ISO/IEC 17043 Standard by the respective reference centres and national reference laboratories in the SADC region
1) Increased access to quality proficiency testing services in the SADC region
2) Improved capacity/capabilities for testing to support the surveillance activities for priority animal diseases in the SADC region and the rest of Africa
3) Control and reduction of the prevalence and/or eradication of priority animal diseases in the SADC region and the rest of Africa
The African participants come from National Veterinary Laboratories of SADC Region as Botswana, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa , Zambia, and Zimbabwe.
The training activities will be organized with traditional oral presentation in the classroom and training on the job in the laboratory (bench training).
The training activities will be organized with traditional oral presentation in the classroom and training on the job in the laboratory (bench training). Trainers will present their experiences of Listeriosis in the field and in the laboratory.