Tanzania to host 'simulation' of disease outbreaks at Namanga

Monday May 20 2019

 

By Zephania Ubwani @TheCitizenTZ news@tz.nationmedia.com

Arusha. The East African Community (EAC) secretariat will tomorrow, May 21, 2019 conduct a mock exercise at Namanga border post to assess the preparedness and respond capabilities to outbreak of major diseases.

The day long field simulation exercise (FSX) will involve about 250 people from both sides of the Tanzania/Kenya border.

"The event simulates an outbreak of an infectious disease from 11th to 14th June 2019 at the border between Tanzania and Kenya", EAC said in a statement yesterday.

Majority of the participants at the simulation exercise will come from the two states while Burundi, Rwanda, South Sudan and Uganda will also be represented.

Since 2018, the EAC region has experienced a number of cross border epidemics most of which affect both humans and animals.

These include, among others, the hemorrhagic Ebola, Marburg, Crimean Kongo and Rift Valley fevers, Cholera, Polio, Rabies and Plague.

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EAC says the diseases not only affected the lives and livelihood of the people in the region but also have a negative impact on agriculture, trade, and tourism.

"Therefore, the EAC applies this FSX approach in which a fictitious cross border outbreak of an infectious disease is simulated", the statement added.

The exercise will be supported by the German Development Agency, (GIZ), through the Support to Pandemic Preparedness in the EAC region (PanPrep).

According to EAC officials, the region was still under the Ebola threat given the long border the region shares with the DR Congo.

Five of the six EAC partner states - Tanzania, Burundi, Rwanda, Uganda and South Sudan share border with the Ebola-hit DR Congo.