Liberia: Liberia, US build public health institute, regional laboratory

Monrovia, Liberia, October 6 (PANA) – Liberia and the United States have cut sod to construct the National Public Health Institute of Liberia (NPHL), national reference and Regional Laboratory buildings in Congo Town, outside Monrovia.

According to a press statement, the Liberian Ministry of Health and the NPHIL and the U.S. Department of  Defense Biosafety and Biosecurity programme performed the groundbreaking on a new public health complex that will enable Liberian authorities more readily to diagnose and conduct research on infectious diseases.

President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, who led the resilient Ebola fight, was joined by U.S. Ambassador to Liberia, Christine Elder, to officiate the groundbreaking occasion for the new National Public Health Institute/ National Reference Laboratory Building.

The event, concurrently, covers the groundbreaking of the Regional Reference Laboratory in Bong County, Central Liberia.

In separate remarks, President Sirleaf and the U.S. Ambassador expressed delight over such ‘noble realization’ which was born out of the Ebola outbreak that caused loss of thousands of lives in Liberia and neighbouring Guinea and Sierra Leone.

Also speaking during the ceremony, NPHIL Director General Tolbert G. Nyenswah described the event as an incredible milestone towards preventing, detecting, and responding to public health threats in Liberia and globally.

The release said the NPHIL, and the US Department of Defense, Defense Threat Reduction Agency-Cooperative Biological Engagement Program (DTRA-CBEP) are the two lead agencies managing the project.

US-based construction firm, Prime Contractor CH2M, is the implementing partner for the construction of the complex while Liberian-owned Engineers and Planners (AEP) Consultants, is the architecture firm designing both projects expected to be completed  in April 2019.

When  completed, the facility will give the Government  of Liberia a platform to address issues of biosafety and biosecurity through the performance of public  health research and diagnostics of dangerous pathogens, epidemiology and disease surveillance.

The project reflects the genuine commitment of the Liberian and the U.S. governments to pursue the objectives outlined in the Global Health Agenda to ensure improved outcomes for the Liberian people, the release said.

“Over the course of the next two years, Liberia and U.S. will work together to provide training, equipment and consumables, to further strengthen laboratory testing capabilities  in Liberia, which will allow for more rapid detection of dangerous diseases, thereby, enabling quicker disease outbreak response,” the release said.
-0- PANA PTK/AR 6Oct2017

06 october 2017 16:34:33

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