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The management and staff of the Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research (NMIMR) wish to congratulate Dr. Benjamin Abuaku, an Epidemiologist at the Institute on his new appointment as a Senior Research Fellow. Dr. Abuaku obtained his Bachelor and Master degrees in the University of Ghana in 1991 and 2000 respectively and focused his thesis on patterns of antimalarial drug use in Ghana. In 2002 he obtained a post-graduate diploma in Research Methodology in the University of Copenhagen and his PhD degree in 2010 in the Central South University, China where he did his thesis onTuberculosis treatment outcomes in Hunan province of China and the Eastern region of Ghana.

He joined the Institute in 1994 as a Senior Research Assistant in the Department of Epidemiology.

 Dr. Abuaku coordinated antimalarial therapeutic efficacy studies in six sentinel sites between 1998 and 2004, the results of which contributed to the change of the national malaria treatment policy in 2005. He continues to provide efficacy data on Artemisinin-based combination Therapies (ACTs) to the National Malaria Control Programme and the World Health Organization.

  Dr. Abuaku has research interest in infectious disease epidemiology, clinical trials, rational drug use, quality assurance in health care facilities and impact of flood hazards.

A multidisciplinary project has started at the Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research. The project under the theme, “Surveillance and Laboratory Support for Emerging Pathogens”, is being undertaken jointly by the Institute, the Ghana Health Service (GHS), and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA)/ Japan Agency for Medical Research and Development (AMED).

The project, which is expected to span a period of 5 years, is aimed at improving disease surveillance, particularly, the enteric fevers in Ghana. The 140th birth anniversary of Dr. Hideyo Noguchi is being observed this year as part of the project launch.

The project was conceived as a follow up to the Ebola outbreak and to serve as support to the Ghana Health Service in case of future outbreaks. The Ga West Municipality has been selected as the study area. The community based surveillance system would pick up strange infections by taking samples for analysis.
In his welcome address, Director of the Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research, Prof. Kwadwo Koram expressed the hope that the project would inure to the benefit of Ghana and the sub region as a whole and also promote international research.

A representative of the Ghana Health Service, Dr. Badu Sarkodie commended stakeholders for making the surveillance project possible. He emphasised the need to strengthen systems to support emergency outbreak of diseases. He mentioned that it was imperative to take steps that will put in place resilient and early detection measures that will check emerging and re-emerging public health infections.

According to Dr. Sarkodie, aside maternal mortality, enteric fevers cost countries more than all other causes of death. As such, there is the need to adequately implement policies that support global health security. He thanked the Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research and the government of Japan for their support. He called for individual and institutional capacities to be strengthened to take up the responsibility of ensuring global health security.

A representative of the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), Mr. Makino spoke about the forty-year partnership between JICA and the Institute which was established in remembrance of  Dr. Hideyo Noguchi who died of yellow fever in Ghana while researching on it.
Mr. Makino congratulated the Institute for their efforts in public health especially during the Ebola outbreak two years ago. According to him, Ghana has great potential in achieving Universal Health Coverage (UCH) and was very optimistic the Institute would lead the charge.

H.E. Kaoru Yoshimura, Japanese Ambassador

The Japanese Ambassador to Ghana, H.E. Kaoru Yoshimura, in a short address, mentioned that the health sector was key in the discussion. He mentioned Ghana, Senegal and Kenya as having been selected as model countries for the surveillance project. He was also confident that this partnership would further the achievement of the Universal Health Coverage under the Sustainable Development Goal 7.

The World Health Organization Country representative, Dr. Owens Kaluwa, called on stakeholders to strive to ensure global health security because infectious diseases were a major cause of morbidity in the sub region. In his presentation, he underscored the need for early detection and control of infections which would strengthen global health. He was of the view that the project would build medical research capacity in the country.

In his closing remarks, Professor Koram encouraged young people to come up with more research areas to be explored. He hinted that the Japanese government had earmarked 20 million dollars for a new research laboratory for the Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical research and was grateful for the kind gesture.

Credit- University of Ghana website

 The Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research (NMIMR) has held a two day workshop for the Postdoctoral Graduate Studentship Program on Manuscript Writing between 22nd to 23rd September. 2016. The event was attended by about 30 postdoctoral graduate students from various disciplines including Health Economics, Medical and Clinical Microbiology, Biochemistry, etc. Also present were the Postdoctoral Fellows and Facilitators for the program.

In his welcome address, the Director of the postdoctoral program and Director of the Institute Prof. Kwadwo Ansah Koram noted that the purpose of the workshop was to help and guide participants on manuscript writing and to encourage them to come out with quality research publications. He indicated that the workshop was an opportunity to deliberate on how to write a good paper for publication and gather data for analysis, He had some interaction with the participants amidst introductions, some of the participants briefly talked about projects they are currently working on.

In addition, there was a lecture on converting thesis into a research paper, summary, language and rhetorical dimensions by Professor Gordon Adika, a Senior Faculty member from the Language Center, University of Ghana. He explained that the best way to convert a lengthy thesis into a good research paper is by having exceptional skills for summary. He followed up with a presentation which comprised of the steps on how to summarize and produce a good paper.In another presentation, Mr. George Mensah, Biostatistician from the NMIMR took the participants through data management and analysis processes.

There were breakout groups for participants and Postdoc Fellows to mentor/guide them on their projects for day two.A member of each group was tasked to give account on what they had learnt from the workshop and how it has helped them.

Finally, certificate of participation were presented to participants by the Postdoctoral Program Coordinator Nana Oye Aniapam and team member Prof. Ben Gyan.

A team of Japanese officials from the Office of the Special Advisor to Mr. Shinzō Abe, the Japanese Prime Minister paid a familiarisation visit to the Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research (NMIMR).

Her Excellency was received by the Director and some few Research Fellows of the institute. She expressed her joy of visiting the institute after hearing of the place for so many times.

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