Zambia Field Epidemiology Training Program
Zambia Field Epidemiology Training Program (FETP) was formed as a partnership between the Zambia Ministry of Health with the US Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) and the University of Zambia (UNZA) in 2014. The program focuses on Ministry of Health national priorities and public health needs. It uses existing public health infrastructure to strengthen the public health surveillance and response systems for priority diseases.
The program enrolled its first cohort of six residents in August 2014 for the two year masters by research program in Field Epidemiology. It launched Level One (hybrid of basic & intermediate curriculum) training in December 2015 with the first workshop of 13 trainees completing in May 2015. It recruited the second cohort of 7 residents in September 2016 in the Advanced 2 year masters by research FETP.
To ensure Zambia FETP residents are among the frontline in responding to disease outbreaks, standard operating procedures for outbreak investigations are in place that allow residents to join or lead any outbreak investigation. To date, residents investigated and responded to over 14 outbreaks national-wide. ZFETP residents during August through September 2018 were among the trainers of rapid response teams in Ebola virus disease (EVD) (Figure 2).
The ZFETP program has continued to participate in AFENET programs; two residents from the Zambia FETP were among trainees for manuscript writing course held in Uganda in July 2018; one resident was selected for the grant writing workshop held in Nigeria in September 2018; and three graduates from cohort one were among trained AFENET Corps of Disease Detectives.