Friday Newsletter
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Dear Centre Leaders,
In todays newsletter:
  • Uganda HDSSs welcome  Centre Leaders for AGM
  • New INDEPTH paper in Emerging Infectious Diseases 
  • WHO launches new Antenatal Care Guidelines
  • Training opportunities
  • Understanding Africa’s diverse gene pool can help fight lifestyle diseases 
  • Quality of ACTs found in Ghanaian markets and public health implications of their use 
1. Uganda HDSSs welcome  Centre Leaders for AGM
The three Ugandan health and surveillance system sites of Iganga Mayuge, Kyamulibwa and Rakai are ready to host Centre Leaders or their representatives. The participants will start arriving in Kampala this weekend for the 15th INDEPTH Annual General Meeting taking place at the Speke Resort Munyonyo. The conference hotel is located about 45 minutes drive from Entebbe International Airport. 

The hosts want to remind all AGM participants that it is a requirement in Uganda that all visitors have a valid Yellow Fever Vaccination Certificate. Arrangements have also been made to have a physician on call during the entire time of the meeting for first aid and emergency cases. This is in addition to a fully fledged hospital which is five minutes-drive from the conference venue. 
Read more
2. New INDEPTH paper in Emerging Infectious Diseases 
Ebola virus disease (EVD) has demonstrated the devastating impact that zoonotic diseases can have on human populations . The recent EVD outbreak exposed national and international weaknesses in existing systems of outbreak response. The ability for this relatively rare virus to quickly spread merits the need for better preparedness plans in at-risk countries. Because zoonotic diseases account for most emerging infectious diseases, effective interventions must focus on animal reservoir hosts in addition to human health-seeking behavior and health system effectiveness.

The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) in collaboration with INDEPTH network hosted an Ebola risk mapping and preparedness planning workshop for the countries identified as at risk for a possible outbreak. The workshop was held on February 25 and 26, 2016, in Accra, Ghana, and was attended by participants from 19 at-risk countries across Africa.
Read more
3. WHO launches new Antenatal Care Guidelines
On 7 November 2016 the World Health Organization (WHO) issued a new series of recommendations to improve quality of antenatal care in order to reduce the risk of stillbirths and pregnancy complications and give women a positive pregnancy experience.

Last year, an estimated 303 000 women died from pregnancy-related causes, 2.7 million babies died during the first 28 days of life ... Read more
4. Training Opportunities
A. THRiVE-2 PhD and Postdoctoral Fellowships
The Training Health Researchers into Vocational Excellence in East Africa (THRiVE-2)  is inviting applications for its PhD and post-doctoral fellowships.
The fellowships seek to train and mentor the most promising young scientists from Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda to become independent, internationally-recognised research leaders and allow for sandwich attachments to the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and the University of Cambridge in the UK. More application details can be found here
Deadline: November 21, 2016
B. Afrique One-ASPIRE (African Science Partnership for Intervention Research Excellence) Fellowships

Afrique One-ASPIRE (African Science Partnership for Intervention Research Excellence) is seeking to recruit 5 Postdoc Research Fellows, 15 PhD Fellows and 18 Master Fellows. Fellowships are designed to cover 5 Thematic Training Programs within the consortium.
Deadline for applications: 20 November 2016.
Fellowship potential starting date: January 2017
For more details on the application process click here.
C. Global Health Equity Scholars (GHES) Fellowship Program
The application cycle for the 2017-2018 Global Health Equity Scholars (GHES) fellowship is now open.  The GHES Fellowship is 12-month mentored research fellowship sponsored by the Fogarty International Center (FIC) and several collaborating institutes and centers at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The program provides research training opportunities for postdoctoral fellows and advanced PhD and professional school students at the University of California, Berkeley, Florida International University, Stanford University, and Yale University; and 31 affiliated international sites across 23 countries (see list at
Deadline for applications: December 1, 2016.
Attachment,  GHEs
News from Centres
1.  Agincourt HDSS: Understanding Africa’s diverse gene pool can help fight lifestyle diseases 
 Genomics opens the door to understanding the genetic drivers that make people more vulnerable to certain diseases. This can help inform decisions about treatment. The approach has been used to great effect in developing countries. Prof. Michèle Ramsay who is the PI of INDEPTH's AWI-Gen Project, explains the challenges that Africa needs to overcome to make it a reality. Chief among them is that the continent has a very wide and diverse genomic spectrum. Read more in this article published in The Conversation. Read more
2.  Kintampo HDSS: Quality of ACTs found in Ghanaian markets and public health implications of their use 
Ghana changed their antimalarial drug policy from monotherapies to Artemisinin-based Combination Therapies in 2004 in order to provide more efficacious medicines for treatment of malaria. The policy change can be eroded if poor quality Artemisinin-based Combination Therapies is allowed to remain on the Ghanaian market unchecked by regulatory bodies and law enforcement agencies. 

A field survey of antimalarial drugs conducted in the central part of Ghana found that a high proportion of Artemisinin-based Combination Therapies sold  were substandard. Manufacturing of medicines that do not adhere to good manufacturing practices may have contributed to the poor quality of the Artemisinin-based Combination Therapies procured. The researchers recommend a strict law enforcement and quality monitoring systems to ensure effective malaria case management as part of malaria control. 
Read more
Policy Engagement and Communications