Strong laboratory leaders—a key asset for global disease control

April 19, 2019

Laboratories play an essential role in the detection, diagnosis, prevention, and control of diseases. To strengthen this role, ECDC (European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control) and five partner organizations have developed the Global Laboratory Leadership Program (GLLP) to support and sustain national laboratory systems under a One Health approach.

Reliable laboratory services continue to be limited in many low- and middle-income countries. Although there have been examples of effective laboratory responses to outbreaks, a well-documented number of such events have shown how a lack of robust laboratory systems can impede disease control and prevention efforts.

To strengthen laboratory systems and address gaps in laboratory leadership competency across sectors, the Global Laboratory Leadership Program (GLLP) was established. ECDC collaborated with five partners to develop the GLLP:

  • Association of Public Health Laboratories (APHL)
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
  • Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO)
  • World Organization for Animal Health (OIE)
  • World Health Organization (WHO)

The GLLP targets professionals working in human and animal health laboratories, as well as laboratories with public health functions such as environmental, agricultural, food, chemical, and aquatic laboratories.

The development of the GLLP represents the first global effort involving input and support from multiple organizations and institutions to create a core set of competencies for laboratory leaders working in support of health systems and a related flexible and adaptable learning package.

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