The East Africa Public Health Laboratory Networking (EAPHLN) Project is a regional project funded by the International Development Agency (IDA)/World Bank. Its goal is to support the establishment of a network of efficient public health laboratories in the five Partner States of East Africa (Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania, and Uganda). Implementation of the project started in 2011 and the objective of the project was to be achieved through:
- Strengthening capacity to diagnose communicable diseases of public health importance and share information to mount an effective regional response
- Support joint training and capacity building to expand the pool of qualified laboratory technicians
- Fund joint operational research and promote knowledge sharing to enhance the evidence base for these investments and support regional coordination and program management
The project’s contribution includes construction/re-development of 41 laboratories; improvement of the quality of performance of the laboratories; training of health workers in disease control, and operational research on several aspects of health care in the region.
In Kenya, an initial loan was granted in 2010. Currently, five satellite Public Health Laboratories have been constructed and equipped and training and capacity building of staff conducted. These laboratories, located in Malindi, Machakos, Kitale, Busia, and Wajir are all operational. Additionally, the National Public Health Laboratory in Nairobi renovated and equipped.
An additional loan granted in 2016 is currently financing construction and equipping of two new project sites at Eldoret and Marsabit.
Regional coordination and planning for the project in the five countries is done by the East, Central and Southern Africa Health Community (ECSA-HC) based in Arusha. Regional Technical Working Groups (TWGs) namely Lab Networking, Training and Capacity Building, Disease surveillance, Operational Research and Performance Based Financing (PBF) spearhead implementation of relevant proposals and decisions for the project.
Implementation of the project in Kenya is done by a Project Coordinating Unit (PCU) based at the National Public Health Laboratory. The unit comprises of a Project Manager, Coordinator, Operations Officer, Monitoring and Evaluation Officer, an Accountant and a Procurement Officer. The National Reference Laboratories in Nairobi offer capacity building and technical assistance to project satellite sites.
EAPHLN sites old and new
Kenya EAPHLN project sites Kenya