Between 4th and 5th may, GHTM-IHMT-NOVA held the 3rd WANETAM Steering Committee Meeting, the first meeting of this network organized in a European country
The West African Network for TB, AIDS and Malaria (WANETAM) was established in July 2009 as part of the European and Developing Countries Clinical Trials Partnership (EDCTP) Programme supported by the European Union (EU). The strategic partnerships are currently established with 25 institutions from 12 West African countries and 5 institutions from 4 European countries.
“WANETAM aimed to build capacity through a program based on partnership, expertise training and organization”
According to the WANETAM Coordinator, Souleymane Mboup, “the main goal of WANETAM is to build regional, national, institutional and individual capacities to conduct research including clinical trials”. Therefore, “WANETAM has operated largely as a capacity building programme based on 5 specific key performance indicators: Partnership, Expertise Training, and Organization”.
“After 13 years of operations and 3 funding cycles, the network has reached significant milestones, such as the training of more than 550 individuals in a multitude of skills and competences, the upgrade of infrastructure, the improvement of quality systems in laboratories, and the establishment of a shared resource platforms, among others. The Network has developed solid South – South collaboration, breaking silos and developing joint activities among researchers in the sub-region”, said Assan Jaye, professor and Head of Training and Career Development at the Medical Research Council the Gambia at London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (MRCG AT LSHTM).
This meeting aimed to “expand this collaborative framework with the northern partners in the network”, mentioned Souleymane Mboup arguing that “we wish to change the paradigm through clearly identified activities of mutual benefits and, therefore, we have targeted Europe for this meeting to fill this gap”.
“A unique opportunity to increase the collaboration between North and South partners”
Professores Henrique Silveira (VBD-GHTM), Miguel Viveiros (THOP-GHTM), Ana Abecasis (THOP-GHTM) and Fátima Nogueira (VBD-GHTM) attended this meeting where, during two days, they shared the work that has been developed, seeking common research interest for partnership. For Henrique Silveira, WANETAM member in the malaria field, this was “a unique opportunity to increase the collaboration between North and South partners. The meeting was highly productive creating an ambitious agenda for the EDCTP 3rd round of funding and onwards”, he complemented.
In the closing session, the IHMT Director, Filomeno Fortes, reiterated that “it was a pleasure to welcome WANETAM at IHMT and to establish a network with its members, providing an opportunity to explore possible future research collaborations between IHMT and African countries”.
To learn more about this network please visit:
WANETAM’s website: https://wanetam.org/