Transform capacity for public health response and partnerships

In Uganda, as in many countries, public health activities of national importance are conducted by a variety of groups, sometimes with little coordination. Creating a comprehensive national public health institute in these countries requires planning, linkages, and partnerships at several levels to improve and protect health.

Within Uganda, UVRI is one of several institutions with public health functions. For years, UVRI withered in the shadow of better-resourced public health players in the country. After two visits from IANPHI peer-assistance teams, UVRI launched a project to increase the institute’s contributions to public health in Uganda. Activities include developing and executing a strategic plan, establishing a computer-equipped resource center, forming new partnerships with other government departments responsible for public health functions, and developing a formal scientific advisory committee to set priorities and identify opportunities. Funds are also supporting enhancement of biosafety, financial, and grant development and management systems.

The small infusion of IANPHI resources and expert consultation through an IANPH capacity-building grant quickly re-energized staff and yielded a new partnership spirit among core UVRI divisions and on-campus programs such as CDC-Uganda and IAVI. Already, these partnerships are strengthening many of the ongoing project activities, such as collaborative strategic planning exercises and training initiatives, joint explorations for grant opportunities, and strengthened IT functions. In short course, the operational improvements positioned UVRI for an essential role in the international response to a challenging outbreak of a new strain of Ebola virus during the last weeks of 2007.

Learn more about The Uganda Virus Research Institute (UVRI) >>