Ethiopia gets national public health training center

Ethiopia gets its first national public health training center built by the finance from the United States government.

The Center is constructed by the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) with funding from the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR).

Constructed at a cost of 150 million birr, the Center is expected to strengthen the development of Ethiopia’s health care workforce at the national level, according to the statement from the United States Embassy in Ethiopia.

“The construction of this new national training center is part of the U.S. Government’s long term commitment to strengthening infrastructure for HIV/AIDS and health systems in Ethiopia,” the statement said.

Through CDC, the United States has provided financial and technical assistance to EPHI for more than 15 years, improving national, regional, and facility-based laboratories, and supporting programmatic and surveillance activities that have helped stem the spread of HIV/AIDS, sexually transmitted infections, and tuberculosis.

The Center is handed over to the Ethiopian Public Health Institute (EPHI) this week on Tuesday. Chargè d’Affaires, Peter H. Vrooman will be joined at the inauguration by State Minister of Health, Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia Dr. Kebede Worku, and CDC Director of the Center for Global Health (CGH) Dr. Rebecca Martin.

In addition, representatives from EPHI, the Ministry of Health, the U.S. Embassy, and others would attend the ceremony.

The center will serve as a training and support hub for Ethiopia’s national public health surveillance, research, and laboratory network, and will help to meet the growing demands for training in the areas of epidemiology, laboratory science, public health, and other fields that are severely lacking.

With a total floor area of more than 10,000 square meters, the multipurpose five-story building meets International Building Code (IBC) standards and features fully equipped conference rooms, an auditorium, and multimedia classrooms.

As the national center for the coordination of public health training, the center will provide a venue for other institutions including the Ministry of Health, universities, and international health organizations have collaborated to bolster their collaborative engagement in the areas of research and training.

It is implemented as part of the ongoing efforts to prepare Ethiopia’s national healthcare workforce to meet the needs of the population and to bolster the capacity to identify and prevent the spread of infectious disease, protecting the lives of Ethiopians and Americans alike, according to the statement of the Embassy.