NCDC Launches Initiative To Enhance Public Health Infrastructure

Nigeria Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (NDCD) has launched the National Genomics Sequencing Consortium aimed at enhancing the nation’s public health infrastructure.

Director-general of NCDC, Dr. Jide Idris, said the initiative will also fortify our health security, being the mandate of NCDC and position Nigeria as a strategic genomic research hub in the global south.

‘We all know the various contributions of genomic sequenring to health security These range from rapid identification and characterization of pathogens, flisease surveillance and outbreak detection and patterns of transmission.

‘Overall, genomic sequencing enhances our ability to respond to health threats by providing detailed insights into the genetic underpinnings of diseases, enabling more precise and effective public health interventions.’ he said.

Jide noted that regulations governing the sharing of genomic surveillance data outside Nigeria’s jurisdiction have been inadequate, particularly within the private sector and academia.

He said the gap has resulted in significant losses of data and opportunities for national benefit.

‘Nigeria lacks a centralised national genomics data repository. A cardinal goal would be to develop a comprehensive strategy that aims to establish such a repository, ensuring ensure data storage, sharing, and utilisation to benefit our nation.

‘Our strategy would also seek to enhance connectivity between various disease control programs and existing surveillance networks first within our national jurisdiction and complementarily at the regional level’, he added.

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