Significant challenges exist in sub-Saharan Africa where vaccination efforts and large-scale campaigns, which focus on rural areas, often have mixed results. In Kenya, the National Rabies Elimination Coordination Committee oversees efforts to eliminate dog-mediated rabies. It is coordinated by the Zoonotic Disease Unit (ZDU) and the ministries of health, and agriculture livestock and fisheries.
The CGIAR COVID-19 Hub, coordinated by CGIAR, the world’s largest publicly funded agricultural research network, in collaboration with the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (LSHTM), will bring together the latest science on agriculture and health to inform a research-based response to the pandemic. The Hub will compile relevant work from across the CGIAR system and partners around the world as well as share future breakthroughs and identify opportunities for new research.
To ensure better and rationalized veterinary service delivery that addresses local needs, the Health of Ethiopian Animals for Rural Development (HEARD) project has established public-private partnership task forces in Ethiopia’s Amhara, Oromia and Somali regions.
A new partnership involving the Kenya Ministry of Health and ILRI with support from the German Federal Government was announced today. ILRI will utilize its laboratory facilities and staff to support the expansion of Kenya’s testing capacity for COVID-19. The testing was launched today, 18 May 2020, when the health director and German ambassador visited ILRI’s Kenya facilities.
Jimmy Smith, director general of the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI), holds a weekly town hall for the 600-plus staff of the institute as well as staff from many of ILRI partners who are hosted on ILRI campuses in Nairobi, Addis Ababa and elsewhere. In the town hall last week, Vish Nene, co-leader of ILRI’s Animal and Human Health program, made a short presentation on the latest developments in COVID-19 vaccine work. Excerpts and slides from his virtual presentation follow.
ILRI scientists Lillian Wambua and Abel Gari have received the Future Leaders – African Independent Research (FLAIR) fellowship award.
In this post, Bernard Bett, Delia Randolph and John McDermott argue that not only are pandemics not over, they may be increasing in frequency; and while most originated in Asia in the past, Africa may be poised to become an important source of so-called ‘zoonotic pathogens’—with its population growth, rapid urbanization and rising global integration offering promising vectors for outbreaks.
ILRI and partners carried out a participatory mapping of livestock routes in the intervention areas in Somali and Oromia regions of Ethiopia as a first step in the planning of the HEARD and HEAL projects.
‘Until we start thinking of human and animal health as linked, another coronavirus is inevitable’, warns Jimmy Smith, the International Livestock Research Institute’s (ILRI) director general in an op-ed published 26 February in the Independent.
A new guest blog article published yesterday (27 Feb 2020) on the website of the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED) argues that weak infrastructure would leave urban settlements in low-income countries highly vulnerable should the rapid spread of COVID-19 continue.