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This question is for those who have experience in working in Low and Middle income countries supporting laboratory systems.As NGO or private sector partners what are the best ways to improve government commitment towards laboratory strengthening?
From personal professional experience I have seen that it's important to first assist the leaders of the Public Health Laboratory to understand and appreciate how Laboratory strengthening can help them achieve quality service delivery. Once the leaders comprehend the what and how to achieve Laboratory strengthening, the next step is to work with them to understand where their Public Health Laboratories need to be strengthened and come up with a Roadmap of how they will incrementally strengthen their systems in a step wise manner. Another important aspect that needs to be considered is the Financial aspects (and therefore political commitment) towards Laboratory Systems Strengthening. If the leaders of the laboratories are capacitated enough to take a lead role in developing the road map they can be in a position to present this to senior management within the Ministry of Health who are in a decision making position. With the leaders taking ownership of the implementation, NGOs can support through Technical assistance and sustainable funding where needed to allow the MoH to take up more commitment towards the end of funding.I am not sure of other countries but from the little I know, National laboratories usually have a budget which they have access to procure reagents and manage such things as contracts. The leaders of the laboratory also need to have visibility into available funding that they can use towards Laboratory strengthening.RegardsSylvester
Dear Dr. Moyo,Thank you for the nicely explained process.Our State Government leaders are now understanding the need for good laboratories and are working towards strengthening the district level labs. A good network of these labs with local, regional, district and state level labs would be very effective and utilise resources better.RegardsLakshmi
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