After a two-year disruption due to the COVID-19 pandemic, The UKHSA IHR Strengthening Project supported the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) to host the fourth Annual Disease Surveillance Review Meeting (ADSRM).

The "Strengthening Sub-national Disease surveillance: Incorporating New Frontiers in Developing an Effective Surveillance System” review meeting was held between the 22nd and 24th of March 2022 in Abuja, Nigeria. The meeting assessed, the implementation status of recommendations from the third ADSRM, activities involving One Health stakeholders at the subnational level, the outcomes of learning needs assessments of State Epidemiologists, and the midterm joint external evaluation of IHR core capacities.

UKHSA, who facilitated the learning needs assessment of the State Epidemiologists, presented the outcome of the review, highlighting knowledge gaps of State Epidemiologists that urgently need to be closed. UKHSA was also a panellist discussing ‘Epidemic intelligence and evolutions in digital surveillance’, as well as ‘One Health – aspiration to action’.

The review meeting adopted a ONE-Health approach with critical stakeholders from key Government Ministries (Health, Agriculture, and Environment), Departments, and Agencies. Over 300 participants were brought together, comprising State Epidemiologists, Disease Surveillance/Notification offices, Laboratory staff, Health promotion officers (HPO), National Stakeholders, and representatives of partner organisations.

At the end of the meeting, several resolutions were reached. Critical to advancing the work that UKHSA does through the IHR Strengthening project are the recommendations to expand the subnational joint external evaluation of IHR core capacities at the subnational level; establishing a robust State Epidemiologists Network; the expansion of real-time reporting of priority diseases; capacity building of surveillance personnel at all levels; the development of surveillance system for zoonotic diseases.

By Dr Jerry Pantuvo