What’s New at LabCoP March 2022

2021 LabCoP Meeting Report

LabCoP is excited to publish the meeting report from our 2021 Annual Meeting, held virtually and in-person. It’s jam packed with session summaries, key takeaways, outcomes, recommendations and next steps. There’s even a link to the new LabCoP song, produced by ASLM’s HIV Awareness Ambassador, Moses ‘Supercharger’ Nsubuga. Download the full report here.

Diagnostic Network Optimisation Sub-Community of Practice

LabCoP continues to grow with our latest Sub-CoP focusing on diagnostic network optimisation, in collaboration with FIND. The SubCoP will facilitate various activities (including dedicated tasks, webinars, presentations at conferences or other meetings) on relevant topics, themes, use-cases and case studies addressing integration and network optimisations at large.

Viral Load Testing Demand Creation Campaigns

LabCoP country teams that participated in the routine viral load testing demand creation campaigns reached over 79,000 people combined during Phase II of the project. Social media proved the most efficient method to reach people, but in-person peer education and support meetings resulted in the most engagement of people living with HIV. LabCoP thanks International Treatment and Preparedness Coalition (ITPC) for assisting the participating country teams through small grants and technical assistance.

IAS Industry Liaison Forum hosted roundtable on end-to-end diagnostics roundtable

LabCoP Program Manager, Anafi Mataka, presented ASLM’s perspective of addressing the data gap to facilitate the regulation and uptake of IVD at the IAS Industry Liaison Forum roundtable on end-to-end diagnostics in February 2022. ASLM called for partners to collaborate towards the increased availability and accessibility to context-relevant data on test performances across diseases, and cost effectiveness of adopted tests for African settings, with disease burden justifying the prioritisation of tests for adoption and implementation.

Looking Ahead

Integration Readiness Tool

LabCoP is developing a tool to assess the level of country readiness and maturity to implement diagnostic integration. The tool will gather key information in support of diagnostic network optimisation exercises. It will be piloted in LabCoP-participating countries and rolled out as part of the structured LabCoP annual laboratory system assessment. Thanks to WHO, FIND, Clinton Health Access Initiative, the Global Fund and US CDC for their support in designing the tool. 

ECHO Sessions

Be on the lookout for announcements about exciting ECHO sessions on the horizon. In April we will feature presentations about drug-resistant TB (MDR and XDR), guidance on selection of TB tests, and the Assay Verification Tool designed to help laboratories implementing new tests. Watch LabCoP’s past ECHO sessions at ASLM’s Resource Centre, here.

LabNetLead Picks up Momentum

The Laboratory Network Leadership and Management (LabNetLead) course kicks off in Malawi with Phase 1 and 2 this April, while Zimbabwe enters Phase 3 and 4 of the course. The course introduces concepts and activities essential to adequately design, optimise, lead and manage functional, high-quality laboratory networks. It is tailored to members of the National Laboratory Working Group (NLWG) and is designed to complement the WHO Global Laboratory Leadership Program (GLLP) in Africa.