Dr Amadou Alpha Sall, the Managing Director of IP Dakar and UN-ASG Ibrahima Cheikh Diong, Director-General of the ARC Group exchanging copies of the signed MOU at the Institut Pasteur Dakar Headquarters in Senegal earlier today.
JOINT AU / IP DAKAR / ARC PRESS RELEASE
The African Risk Capacity (ARC) Group and the Fondation Institut Pasteur de Dakar (IP Dakar) sign a partnership agreement to support regional capacities for epidemiological surveillance and outbreak response.
Dakar, Senegal, September 13, 2021 – The African Risk Capacity (ARC) Group and the Fondation Institut Pasteur de Dakar (IP Dakar) today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) establishing a collaborative framework to assist African Union Member States to better prepare, plan and respond to epidemics and other high-impact infectious disease outbreaks.
Under the agreement, IP Dakar and ARC Agency will join forces and leverage their individual expertise to support the evaluation of AU member states capacities for epidemiological surveillance, outbreak response, and laboratory diagnostics. This will be beneficial for contingency planning and providing a timely response to disease outbreaks and mitigating outbreak situations.
Speaking at the signing of the MoU at the headquarters of the IP Dakar in Senegal, UN-ASG Ibrahima Cheikh Diong, Director-General of the ARC Group, indicates that the combined expertise of the two agencies would provide a unified front against infectious disease outbreaks for Africa. “We have reliably proven that a forecast-based anticipatory approach, aided by predictive analytics and risk analysis, provides faster, more cost-efficient and more dignified response ahead of climate and other natural hazards.” Contingency planning built into the ARC model has helped to provide customised early warning to participating Member States thereby saving more lives and livelihoods in the event of a disaster. “A formalised partnership with IP Dakar through its newly established Center for Africa Resilience to Epidemics will enable us to mutually leverage each agency’s expertise, and that of other stakeholders, to provide a pan-African approach to build synergies for holistic, timely, and effective early action against identified disease outbreaks” concludes Mr. Diong.
The Outbreaks and Epidemics Programme of the ARC Group was built on its sovereign parametric risk insurance model which has delivered impressive and lifesaving results against drought and tropical cyclone for participating African countries. Targeted at 4 diseases of epidemic potential including acute haemorrhagic fevers (Ebola, Marburg, and Lassa fever), and Meningitis, it aims to equip AU member states with an array epidemic preparedness and response tools (risk profiling, risk modelling, contingency planning) combined with adapted funding options, to swiftly contain and stop the spread of disease outbreaks.
In his remarks, Dr Amadou Alpha Sall, the Managing Director of IP Dakar, welcomes the partnership with the Specialized Agency of the African Union, the ARC Group, stating that such collaboration will be a win-win for combatting outbreaks and epidemics in Senegal and the entire African region. “We are the foremost biomedical research centre in Senegal deploying cutting-edge research and diagnostic services that extends to production and distribution of human vaccines, knowledge development and sharing. Since inception, our approach has continued to help in saving lives by preventing most disease epidemics. Therefore, we are very optimistic that a partnership with ARC will further strengthen our public health interventions by providing us with the requisite anticipatory tools and expertise for early response against outbreaks and epidemics in a more contingent manner.”
Under the MoU, the IP Dakar and its technical partners will support the continuous development of realistic outbreak response scenarios and spearhead the validation of national contingency plans in West African countries using the Risk Analytics and Disease Modelling tools as well as Contingency Planning Guidelines which ARC has developed and those of the IP Dakar to improve preparedness, planning and efficiency of response to epidemic prone diseases. This will guide countries in the development of costed- and pathogen-specific response scenarios upon declaration of an outbreak for deploying first national response plans.
Notes to Editors:
About ARC Group
African Risk Capacity (ARC) Group consists of ARC Agency and ARC Insurance Company Limited (ARC Ltd). ARC Agency was established in 2012 as a Specialized Agency of the African Union to help the Member States improve their capacities to better plan, prepare and respond to weather-related disasters. ARC Ltd is a mutual insurance facility providing risk transfer services to the Member States through risk pooling and access to reinsurance markets. ARC was established on the principle that investing in preparedness and early warning through an innovative financing approach is highly cost-effective and can save upward of four dollars for every dollar invested ex-ante.
With the support of the United Kingdom, Germany, Sweden, Switzerland, Canada, France, the European Union, the Rockefeller Foundation, and the United States, ARC assists the AU Member States in reducing the risk of loss and damage caused by extreme weather events affecting Africa’s populations by providing, through sovereign disaster risk insurance, targeted responses to natural disasters in a more timely, cost-effective, objective, and transparent manner. ARC is now using its expertise to help tackle some of the other most significant threats faced by the continent, including floods and outbreaks & epidemics.
Since 2014, 62 policies have been signed by the Member States for cumulative insurance coverage of US$719 million for the protection of 72 million vulnerable populations in participating countries.
For more information, please visit: www.africanriskcapacity.org/
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About Fondation Institut Pasteur de Dakar
Institut Pasteur de Dakar (IPD) is a non-profit private foundation of public utility under Senegalese low, and its objective is of protecting and promoting public health and well-being in West Africa; through 5 different health-related sectors: Research and development; Diagnosis, vaccination, nutrition and environment; Education, training and talent development; Expertise and strategic direction in public health; Production and distribution of human vaccines; and considering its major role in global health as a WHO collaborating Centre for Arboviruses and Haemorrhagic fevers; a National Reference Centre recognized by WHO for Influenza and respiratory viruses, Poliomyelitis, Measles, and Rotaviruses; and a Regional Reference Laboratory for Avian Influenza.
Chinedu Moghalu | Communications & Advocacy Advisor | African Risk Capacity (ARC) Group | E-mail: email@example.com
Camille Abbey | Head of Communication, | Institut Pasteur de Dakar (IPD) | E-mail :
Molalet Tsedeke| Media Coordinator | Directorate of Information and Communication, African Union Commission | E-mail: MolaletT@africa-union.org