Liberia Field Epidemiology Training Program

Liberia FETP Bulletin: February – March 2022

Moving from Response to Capacity Building

FETP Intermediate Cohort 6 Workshop 1

The Liberia Field Epidemiology Training Program (LFETP) began the training of its sixth cohort 6 with a workshop from January 31 to February 9, 2022. Prior to the workshop, the program organized an online Pre-Admission Course (OPAC), an examination and selection process coordinated by a committee constituted by the major stakeholders. Fifteen participants were selected for the cohort 6 Intermediate LFETP. A one-day orientation was organized for the successful participants before the workshop, which took place at the National Public Health Institute of Liberia (NPHIL).

The training team comprising AFENET Faculty, facilitators from NPHIL, and the Liberia Ministry of Health was led by the Resident Advisor,  Dr. Maame Amo-Addae.

The materials for the workshop were delivered through didactic lectures, group workshops, case studies, and personal assignments. There were different evaluations to ensure each participant was fully and adequately engaged. The topics for this cohort were modified based on the feedback from the previous five cohorts to allow for early engagement in study designs and scientific communications. Data analysis was also introduced early in the workshop to allow trainees ample time to master the skills and improve the key deliverables’ timelines. One of the key deliverables for each trainee was to draft a protocol for their secondary data analysis and the surveillance system evaluation with support from their mentors.

Picture 1: Dr. Maame Amo-Addae presenting at the Orientation Session of Liberia Intermediate Cohort 6, January 2022
Picture 1: Dr. Maame Amo-Addae presenting at the Orientation Session of Liberia Intermediate Cohort 6, January 2022
Picture 2: A cross section of Liberia Intermediate Cohort 6 Trainees and Facilitators at the end of Workshop 1, February 2022
Picture 2: A cross section of Liberia Intermediate Cohort 6 Trainees and Facilitators at the end of Workshop 1, February 2022

Scientific Writing Workshop

The Liberia FETP held her first Scientific Manuscript Writing Workshop for the year from March 28 to April 1, 2022.

Nineteen graduates submitted 18 draft manuscripts at the end of the call for the submission of the draft manuscript for consideration. The manuscripts were reviewed, and 18 manuscripts from 16 graduates were invited to participate in the workshop. 

The manuscripts were developed from outbreak investigation, surveillance system evaluation, and protocolbased studies the participants were involved in during and after their FETP training. Their varied topics related to the COVID-19 pandemic, measles outbreak investigation, AMR, Maternal and Child Health, Cancer, and animal bite. The faculties were drawn from the AFENET and NPHIL. The topics covered included publication ethics, writing the different sections of the manuscripts, choosing the appropriate journal, responding to the reviewers’ comments, and use of reference manager.

Executive FETP Cohort 2 Workshop 2 and Graduation

The second workshop of the Executive FETP (FETP-E) cohort 2 commenced on February 28, 2022, with 14 Medical Directors from referral health facilities of thirteen counties in Liberia as participants. These Medical Directors were equipped with the requisite public health knowledge and skills to adequately supervise disease surveillance in their respective health facilities.
The training ended on March 4, 2022 in a graduation ceremony marked by speeches from the faculty and Partners, and presentations by the graduating cohort members. The graduating Medical Directors were presented with certificates on completion.

Technical support for The Gambia FETP

The Resident Advisor of Liberia FETP, Dr. Maame Amo-Addae, was assigned by the Regional AFENET office to provide technical support for the second training workshop of The Gambia Intermediate Cohort 1. At the workshop held in Banjul from March 11 to 21, 2022, residents were introduced to epidemiological study designs.
Picture 12: Dr. Maame AmoAddae, Resident Advisor Liberia FETP/Country Technical Lead AFENET Liberia, facilitating a didactic session of The Gambia FETP Intermediate Cohort 1 workshop 2, March 13, 2022

WAC-CREP 5th International Conference

Three graduates of the Liberia FETP had their abstracts accepted for presentation at the 5th International Conference of the West African Consortium for Clinical Research on Epidemic Pathogens.

Two of the conference abstracts were for oral presentation and one for poster presentation. The main theme of the Conference was “Research for Response to COVID-19 in West Africa”.

FETP Frontline Cohort 13 Workshop 1

AFENET Liberia continued to provide technical and programmatic support to the COVID-19 response in Liberia. Significantly, AFENET Liberia supported the National Epi surveillance data management team in data analytics and geospatial mapping of COVID-19 cases. The team provides similar support to the Montserrado County Health Team (MCHT).

Figure 16: Distribution of COVID-19 cases in Montserrado communities, March 31, 2022. [Map production: AFENET Liberia]

FETP Frontline Cohort 13 Workshop 1

The first workshop for the Liberia FETP Frontline Cohort 13 took place from March 21 –25, 2022 at the NPHIL. The trainees comprise 26 participants; nine national level officers from NPHIL, one trainee each from National Malaria Control Program and National TB Program; three county level officers, including an Agriculture Surveillance officer; seven District Surveillance Officers; five Health Facilities Surveillance Focal Person; and one zonal Surveillance Officer.

During the 5-day workshop, trainees received presentations on introduction to public health surveillance, introduction to Integrated Disease Surveillance and Response (IDSR), collecting data, case definition and Line list, data quality assessment, summary statistics, measures of disease frequency, displaying
and interpreting data, case investigation, monitoring and evaluation, and the use of Microsoft Office productivity Word, Excel, PowerPoint in Public Health.

Picture 20: End of workshop, Cohort 13 trainees and facilitators