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Global Health Partnerships Team Leads Sessions at First Conference of the African Society for Laboratory Medicine

More than 1,000 laboratory professionals, clinicians, researchers, students, and policy makers gathered in Cape Town, South Africa from December 1–7, 2012 for the First International Conference of the African Society for Laboratory Medicine (ASLM). Five CLSI staff members attended the conference and led sessions, poster presentations, and meetings that focused on laboratory strengthening.

CLSI was a gold sponsor of the event, and staff volunteered in both the planning phase and during the conference. CLSI Chief Executive Officer, Glen Fine, MS, MBA, CAE, served as a co-Chairholder of the program committee for the conference. He is also a co-Chairholder of the committee that has been tasked with revising the assessment checklist for the newly designed World Health Organization African Regional Office/ASLM laboratory recognition program.

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“The first annual ASLM meeting was a major event, and the first time a broad-based pan-African meeting of laboratory professionals of this type has been held,” said Fine. “CLSI is committed to supporting the mission of ASLM, in part, to harmonize the use of CLSI’s global consensus standards and companion resources, as well as its staff and volunteers, to directly and measurably improve the quality of laboratory services in Africa.”

Karen McClure, PhD, MLS(ASCP), SBB, Vice President of CLSI’s Global Health Partnerships program (GHP), sits on the ASLM editorial board, and Patrick Mateta, GHP Senior International Program Manager, is a member of the Independent Advisory Committee for ASLM. Along with Dr. McClure and Mateta, GHP Directors Frances Ingersoll and Connie Adams, and CLSI Development Director Lauren Wiley traveled to the ASLM Conference. CLSI-led sessions included “Beyond Reagent Quality Control and Proficiency Testing” and “Building Sustainable Partnerships to Improve Quality of Laboratory Diagnostics.”

“It was a unique and exciting experience to be part of this first conference for ASLM,” said Dr. McClure. “The diversity of presentation topics were gratifying to see. The topics were also very applicable for African laboratory professionals. CLSI looks forward to future opportunities to work with ASLM.”

ASLM organized the conference to bring together health care professionals and policy makers from Africa and around the world to discuss the latest developments and initiatives for strengthening national laboratory health systems and networks, diagnostics, and their impact on health care delivery and disease surveillance.

ASLM was launched in March, 2011 with a mission to advance professional laboratory medicine practice, science, systems, and networks in Africa. Success in these initiatives will bring needed support to preventive medicine, quality care of patients, and disease control through partnerships with governments and relevant organizations. ASLM’s goal is to support the advancement of health systems in all African nations in order to achieve affordable access to quality laboratory services and make effective treatment and disease prevention possible.

“For the first time, ASLM has created the infrastructure, support, and delivery avenues to optimize the use of CLSI’s and partner organizations’ grant-funded initiatives to improve designated laboratories quality management systems in a logical and step-wise fashion,” Fine said.
To learn more about CLSI’s GHP program and how your company can support its work to improve laboratory systems in developing countries, visit www.clsi.org/global-health-partnerships. For more information about ASLM, please visit www.aslm.org.

 

Patrick Mateta Video

Patrick Mateta, Senior International Program Manager, CLSI, describes the life-changing experience of volunteering for the Global Health Partnerships program.

GHP’s Global Partners

  • ASCP
  • ASLM
  • ASM
  • CDC
  • CHAI
  • FHI
  • GHSS
  • KIT
  • URC
  • WHO-AFRO
  • WHO-Lyon

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