March 22, 2021 – In 2019 CARPHA became an active member of the international network for the GHSA Action Package for Biosafety and Biosecurity (Action Package Prevent 3). On request of the previous Chair – Portugal, CARPHA assumed responsibilities as the Chair of the GHSA APP3 for the period October 2020 to September 2021. The agency is the only participating organisation to assume this status.
According to Dr. Joy St. John, Executive Director, “CARPHA as the Secretariat of the Regional Mechanism on Health Security (RCM-HS) is driving regional multi-sectoral coordination to prepare, detect and respond to public health threats. So, this opportunity as the Chair has seen CARPHA connecting to the Global Health Security Agenda and supporting Member States in improving their national capacities across the various IHR requirements including Biosafety and Biosecurity; and National Laboratory Systems. Biosafety and Biosecurity is considered a pillar for regional health security in the Caribbean and our new role as Chair of this global network allows us to share our experiences and advocate for sustainable systems which are appropriate to the regional and national communities we serve.”
During this period, CARPHA represented by Ms. Sacha Wallace-Sankarsingh, Biorisk Manager will work with over 150 professionals from thirty countries and international organisations to take collective action to improve biosafety and biosecurity indicators and achieve the target set by the GHSA 2024 framework.
As Chair, CARPHA will advance global biosafety and biosecurity initiatives in countries who have committed to improve their Joint External Evaluation (JEE) scores and support international and regional activities which accelerate the translation of these commitments to national actions that result in measurable improvements in biosecurity and biosafety capacity.