The Abu Dhabi Public Health Centre (ADPHC) of the Department of Health – Abu Dhabi (DoH), for the first time in the Middle East, is hosting a consultation on comprehensive surveillance for influenza and other respiratory viruses a World Health Organisation event from December 11 to 13, 2023 in Abu Dhabi.
The event will bring together over 100 participants, including representatives from the Global disease prevention and diagnostic laboratories in 60 countries and international experts.
The objective is to develop and implement a global approach to boost preparedness for influenza and other priority respiratory diseases with epidemic and pandemic potential.
In collaboration with the World Health Organisation (WHO), and with support from the Ministry of Health and Prevention (MoHAP), this initiative aligns with Abu Dhabi’s healthcare sector’s strategy aiming to enhance surveillance systems and their readiness for dealing with emerging respiratory diseases. The continuous improvement in dealing with such diseases is crucial, given that influenza is a prevalent respiratory ailment posing a significant challenge to community health, with impacts spanning across various sectors. The event will also enable the utilisation of global experiences and expertise in public health, fostering international collaboration to build networks dedicated to combating infectious diseases. It aims to discover the latest strategies for preventing the spread of influenza.
Furthermore, its outcomes will contribute to updating surveillance practices and developing the integrated Global Influenza Surveillance and Response System (GISRS), thereby enhancing the capacity to address global health challenges and strengthen mechanisms for GISRS to coordinate with non-sentinel surveillance and response systems for early detection, monitoring activity and informed use of public health measures in a future pandemic or epidemic.
In a statement by Matar Saeed Al Nuaimi, Director-General of Abu Dhabi Public Health Centre (ADPHC), said, “This unique event aims to achieve a common understanding of global health challenges and exchange experiences in the context of preventing the spread of influenza. Discussions focused on enhancing international collaboration against infectious diseases, encouraging the development of new strategies to prevent the spread of influenza and other respiratory viruses, and emphasising research and development to contribute to enhancing Abu Dhabi’s ability to provide advanced solutions to public health challenges and elevate its position as a key player in medicine and scientific research.”