Next Article in Journal
Taking Advantage of Nature’s Benefits: Soluble and Stable Antigen Straight Out of the Pathogen
Previous Article in Journal
Metabarcoding-Like Approach for High Throughput Detection and Identification of Viral Nucleic Acids
Order Article Reprints
Font Type:
Arial Georgia Verdana
Font Size:
Aa Aa Aa
Line Spacing:
Column Width:

Strategic Harmonization of Training on Biosecurity for Laboratories in the ECOWAS Region †

Nigerian Institute of Medical Research 6, Edmund crescent off Murtala Mohammed way, P.M.B. 2013 Yaba Lagos, Nigeria
Nigerian Biosafety Association, Suite 39, Shalom Plaza, Gudu District, FCT Abuja 900104, Nigeria
Senegalese Biosafety Association, Dakar 999066, Sénégal
West African Network on Tuberculosis, Aids and Malaria (WANETAM), Arrondissement 4 Rue 2 D1 Pole urbain de Diamniado, BP 7325 Dakar, Senegal
International Federation of Biosafety Associations (IFBA), 102-2460 Lancaster Road, Ottawa, ON K1B 4S5, Canada
Institut Pasteur Dakar (IPD), Dakar 999066, Senegal
Fondation Mérieux (FMx), 69002 Lyon, France
Association of Public Health Laboratories on behalf of Centre of Diseases Control (US CDC), Silver Spring, MD 20910, USA
Institut Pasteur de Côte d’Ivoire (IPCI), Abidjan 00225, Côte d'Ivoire
Department of Public Health and Research, West African Health Organization (WAHO), 01 BP 153 Bobo-Dioulasso, Burkina Faso
Health Department, GFA Consulting Group GmbH, Eulenkrugstraße 82, 22359 Hamburg, Germany
World Health Organization (WHO), 1200 Geneva, Switzerland
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Presented at the 5th African Conference on Emerging Infectious Diseases, Abuja, Nigeria, 7–9 August 2019.
Proceedings 2020, 45(1), 12;
Published: 22 July 2020
(This article belongs to the Proceedings of The 5th African Conference on Emerging Infectious Diseases)


Background: Good laboratory practices in terms of biosecurity and biosafety are essential for the protection of laboratory personnel, the populations and the environment. If not implemented, the risk of pathogen spreading from the laboratory is conceivable. In addition, in current African geopolitical context, the reliable practices such as the protection, control and tracking of valuable biological material will prevent their loss, theft, uncontrolled access and potential misuse. WAHO, with the support of KfW is implementing trainings of trainers on biosecurity in the ECOWAS region in a project called PROALAB. PROALAB team realized that many partners were aiming at implementing in parallel quite similar non internationally certified programs in the ECOWAS region. Therefore, PROALAB decided to organize a meeting of key stakeholders in order to pool efforts, avoid duplication, and harmonize strategies and procedures. Objective: Develop a harmonized strategy and harmonized procedures for the training of health professionals in biosecurity/biosafety and biohazard risk management in ECOWAS member countries to pass internationally certified biosafety and biosecurity examinations. Methods: Programs of each of the institutions were presented and discussed. A regional program on biosecurity/biosafety training was elaborated during group working and a regional program of certification of trainers was discussed and validated. A work plan and timeline were developed through group working. Results: In the ECOWAS region, some countries are more advanced in biosecurity training. Training is generally organized by national biosecurity associations with the support of the IFBA or other partners (WHO, FMx, PHE, etc.). Côte d’Ivoire, Nigeria and Mali seem more advanced and could be solicited to organize training for less-advanced countries. The IFBA certification covers five domains: (1) Biorisk management, (2) biosecurity, (3) biosafety cabinet, (4) biological waste management and (5) biocontainment facility. The technical working group decided consensually that basic training for biosecurity managers in the laboratories should cover the first two domains. More advanced experts advising governments should be trained in the other domains progressively. Progressive training could be built on the 3 levels Nigerian/Ivoirian system of “basic-advanced-consolidated (or expert)” system. Existing module from WHO, FMx, IPD, IPCI and other ECOWAS countries should be adapted to match the international certification needs. Practical training should also be organized in the laboratory by the same institutions that will be allowed to deliver a practical certificate on behalf of WAHO. Conclusion: With the extension of laboratory activities in the context of strengthening the surveillance programs in the ECOWAS region, more expertise on biosecurity is needed. With the support of national biosecurity associations, WAHO could play a role in harmonizing reinforcing training on biosecurity and legislation.

Share and Cite

MDPI and ACS Style

Emmanuel, A.A.; Akinpelu, D.A.; Rokhaya, D.; Sada, D.; Maureen, E.; Abdourahmane, F.E.; Ousmane, F.; Lorene, F.; Khady, K.; Elogne, K.C.; Olivier, M.; Christophe, P.; Jean, S.; Amadou, S.; Marceline, S.A.; Abdourahmane, S.; Tieble, T. Strategic Harmonization of Training on Biosecurity for Laboratories in the ECOWAS Region. Proceedings 2020, 45, 12.

AMA Style

Emmanuel AA, Akinpelu DA, Rokhaya D, Sada D, Maureen E, Abdourahmane FE, Ousmane F, Lorene F, Khady K, Elogne KC, Olivier M, Christophe P, Jean S, Amadou S, Marceline SA, Abdourahmane S, Tieble T. Strategic Harmonization of Training on Biosecurity for Laboratories in the ECOWAS Region. Proceedings. 2020; 45(1):12.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Emmanuel, Abayomi Akinola, Denloye Abiodun Akinpelu, Diagne Rokhaya, Diallo Sada, Ellis Maureen, Faye Elhadji Abdourahmane, Faye Ousmane, Fofana Lorene, Kebe Khady, Kouame Clarisse Elogne, Manigart Olivier, Peyrefitte Christophe, Sakande Jean, Sall Amadou, Sarr Aicha Marceline, Sow Abdourahmane, and Traore Tieble. 2020. "Strategic Harmonization of Training on Biosecurity for Laboratories in the ECOWAS Region" Proceedings 45, no. 1: 12.

Article Metrics

Back to TopTop