Health as a development issue impacts on the economic, social and security of countries and regions when epidemics occur as witnessed during the Ebola outbreak in West Africa between 2014 and 2015. Africa currently faces the triple burden of communicable and Non Communicable Diseases (NCDs), and injury and trauma. Challenges resulting from outbreaks such as Yellow Fever, Cholera, natural and human made disasters are affecting the continent adversely and continue to pose threats to Africa’s development aspirations.
Cognisant of these major challenges, the African Union Heads of State and Government (HoSG) at the July 2013 Abuja Special Summit on AIDS, TB and Malaria in Abuja recognized the urgent need to put in place a Specialised Agency to support African Union Member States in their efforts to strengthen health systems and to improve surveillance, emergency response, and prevention of infectious diseases. During this Special Summit, the Assembly requested the African Union Commission to work out the modalities for establishing the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC).