Fifth Annual Meeting for West African Laboratory Professionals Opens Today

MONROVIA, Montserrado – The fifth annual meeting of laboratory professionals across West Africa kicks off today in Monrovia.

The event, known as CelebrateLAB, is the largest gathering of laboratory professionals in the ECOWAS region, and will last for two days at the Monrovia City hall.

A press release disclosed that laboratory scientists from public and private sectors, officials from the World Health Organization, the Ministry of Health, and the National Public Health Institute of Liberia are expected to be in the meeting.

The attendees – laboratory scientists from across the region – are expected to share best practices.

CelebrateLAB ambassadors from Ghana, Guinea, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, and Liberia have pledged to improve regional laboratory diagnostics.

Dr. Dougbeh Chris Nyan, one of the conference ambassadors and an industry innovator and chief executive and scientific officer of Shufflex Biomed in the U.S. and Liberia, said professionals in the region are capacitated to lead the continent’s scientific destiny for the benefit of their people.

“We have the ingenuity to take Africa’s scientific destiny into our own hands for the benefit of humanity,” Nyan was quoted as saying.

The 2014 Ebola epidemic in the region exposed the vulnerabilities of regional health systems and highlighted the urgent need for collaboration and experience-sharing amid the cross border movement of people.

This year’s conference emphasizes strengthening collaborations across West African borders and promoting public-private partnerships.

Africabio Enterprises CEO Candace Eastman, whose organization will be participating in the gathering, said “CelebrateLAB is specifically about improving health outcomes.”

The German development agency GIZ is one of the event’s sponsors. GIZ works with the Liberian Ministry of Health and the National Public Health Institute of Liberia to strengthen laboratory and biomedical capacity through training, mentorship, and the establishment of a regional biomedical engineering workshop and microbiology lab.

During the event, GIZ will facilitate a workshop that will focus on product lifecycle management, preventive maintenance, lessons learned, and emerging best practices for strengthening the workforce and supporting quality improvements in public laboratories and biomedical workshops.

Featured photo courtesy of CelebrateLAB

Gbatemah Senah

Gbatemah is a graduate of the University of Liberia and a recipient of the Jonathan P. Hicks Scholarship for Mass Communications. In 2017, Senah won three Press Union of Liberia awards: Women's Rights Reporter of the Year, Legislative Reporter of the Year, and Land Rights Reporter of the Year. In 2018, he was also recognized as the Land Rights Reporter of the Year.

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