May 24, 2022
Our region has been especially vulnerable to ongoing public health emergencies that further burden the health overwhelmed health systems in many countries. And expanding the capacities of EMR countries is needed to reduce the devastating impact of such emergencies. Border Health, a priority area gaining importance in recent years, is one way to empower countries to detect, respond to, and mitigate associated public health risks.
GHD|EMPHNET and its partners are working in support of border health efforts in the region and globally. Recently, GHD|EMPHNET, in collaboration with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and CRDF Global, conducted a regional symposium Reimagining Border Health Strategies for the Eastern Mediterranean Region. This large-scale event where border health professionals and other stakeholders joined from 17 countries in the Eastern Mediterranean and beyond: Bangladesh, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Libya, Lebanon, Morocco, Oman, Palestine, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Somalia, Tunisia, and Yemen.
The symposium was held to enable these professionals to share lessons from past experiences and to move into the future with a focus on developing strategies for stronger border health systems. Each representative presented strengths and challenges of their country’s border health systems, as well as their view of building capacities at national, regional, and global levels. This was through extensive discussions focused on border health lessons learned from the COVID-19 pandemic, travel health risks during mass gatherings, and information sharing and collaboration.
Patronized by HE the Minister of Health of Jordan Dr. Firas Al Hawari, the symposium took place between May 15 and 17, 2023, in Amman, Jordan.
Countries contributed to the development of a white paper, currently being developed as an outcome of the symposium, summarizing border health challenges across the region while offering recommendations to address them.