In November 2023, the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) lauched the Africa Pathogen Genomics Initiative (Africa PGI 2.0) on the sidelines of CPHIA in Lusaka, Zambia. The launch was officiated by H.E. Dr Jean Kaseya, Director General of Africa CDC and Dr Moeti Matshidiso, World Health Organization (WHO) Regional Director for Africa. Africa PGI 2.0 is a flagship initiative of the Africa CDC that aims to leverage on the progress made and lessons learned from the COVID-19 pandemic response. It focuses on and strengthening the molecular diagnostic, genomics, and bioinformatics ecosystem in Africa.
The initiative is built upon four strategic priorities. The first priority is to enhance foundational capacities by developing skilled workforce, and networks in the fields of molecular diagnostics, genomics and bioinformatics. The second priority is to strengthen data management, analysis, sharing and translation to inform public health response. The third priority is the implementation of high priority genomic use-cases for public health through an integrated genomic surveillance system. Finally, the fourth priority is to advocate for sustainability and enabling mechanisms through a collaborative community approach involving the whole community.
Through Africa PGI 2.0, Africa CDC is shifting its focus from emergency response to building an optimized, resilient, and integrated molecular diagnostic and genomic surveillance ecosystem.
Collaboration is at the heart of Africa PGI 2.0. as Africa CDC aims to strengthen the pivotal public-philanthropic-private partnerships and create the synergy needed to maximize the impact of genomics for disease control and prevention in Africa. By prioritizing capacity-building, data management, genomic surveillance, and collaboration, Africa PGI 2.0 sets the stage for leveraging genomics to address current and future public health challenges in Africa. Through this initiative, Africa is equipping itself with the necessary tools and expertise to lead the way in disease control and prevention through genomics.