Aim: To establish a laboratory network with the capabilities to provide integrated support to clinical research in preparation for and response to outbreaks in SSA.
WP2 is planning for face-to-face and online training on sequencing for other areas. Partners are still discussing the online content. For the face-to-face training, partners will pay for travel and aaccommodation for each participant, and IPD will look at the budget for the organisation of the training in Sénégal.
ALERRT is conducting a Covid-19 Clinical Characterisation Protocol (CCP) study with funding received from the Wellcome Trust. The Nested Study is a sub study within the CCP. The study will investigate risk factors and outcomes for Covid with a particular focus on co-morbidities in an African context (anaemia, helminth infections, malaria, HIV, TB and hepatitis). The study will be conducted by ALERRT partners who are already conducting the CCP (Cameroon, Ghana, Senegal, Uganda, DRC and Guinea)
WP2 (IPD) have been involved in developing the laboratory aspects of the nested study; their assistance will also be required for developing training and Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs).
An e-learning module focusing on Good Clinical Laboratory Practices (GCLP) was developed by IPD in collaboration with WP5. This training will be available online and is intended to target and serve the formative laboratories, but also any laboratory team or individual within the network wishing to receive a general introduction to GCLP. Both English and French versions of the module have been developed to make the training accessible to both English- and French-speaking laboratories within the network. The modules are designed to use both a video/audio and a written format to facilitate various learning preferences. The modules are being finalized before dissemination on the ALERRT training platform.
IPD is currently working on the establishment of a questionnaire to assess the lab capacities and practices in the context of AMR tracking. The draft of the questionnaire should be circulated to WP2 members for feedback at the beginning of 2021. It will then be put into electronic format and issued to the network laboratories.
A presentation was made by Dr Moussa Moïse Diagné from WP2 for ALERRT during the PANDORA Laboratory Quality Control(QC) workshop on October 21-22, 2020, on the subject "Infrastructures and utilities". Please see further details and resources available from the Laboratory Quality Control workshop.
Lab Research Capacity Strengthening (IP Dakar, RARS, UNHRO, UNIYA, LSHTM, BNITM) A‘laboratory classification survey’ designed and implemented by WP2 highlighted the need for capacity strengthening within the ALERRT laboratory network, particularly in four domains. A proposed training program was developed accordingly and currently focuses on these four key areas:
The training will be organised and delivered according to the allocated status (principal, developing, formative)of the different participating laboratories. The final proposal for this training programme is under development.
IPD participated in different meetings organized to prepare a COVID-19 focused nested study with the participants to the current ALERRT CCP cohort study. Procedures and training for the laboratory part of the nested study will be prepared by WP2 in collaboration with WP1 and ALERRT CCP partners, once the types of samples and analyses to be performed will be determined.