The conference co-chairs welcome you to attend the ASLM2016 conference. The conference will bring together leaders and professionals from Africa and across the world to discuss current global health threats, and the contribution laboratories can make in accelerating the development of solutions.

Our vision is clear: we aim to combat global health threats together, and invite you to be part of the solution.

Throughout the ASLM2016 conference there will be stimulating round table discussions, symposia, and seminar workshops all geared towards developing practical and pragmatic solutions to address some of the greatest disease threats we face.

As conference chairs, we believe that strong laboratory networks coupled with good surveillance strategies are needed to combat global health threats. Indeed, one of the principal lessons of the Ebola crisis was that a lack of proper diagnostic facilities in rural West Africa failed to accurately and quickly identify the disease contributing to its rapid spread.

The crisis also underscored how in an increasingly interconnected world, diseases such as Ebola are not just an ‘African problem’ but a global one, posing a threat to global health security as well as the world economy. Zika is the latest example of how emerging and re-emerging diseases are having a field day traversing countries and continents, and spreading more quickly than ever.

We do not know where the next pandemic will emerge or when; but we do know that our best hope for guarding against it is to ensure that scientists and public health workers in Africa, operating on the frontlines of disease, are properly trained and equipped – starting with the establishment of robust diagnostic laboratories.

The very fact that ASLM has convened such a diverse group of people also reflects a growing recognition that collaborative action across multiple parties is needed to tackle the major health challenges of our time – no government or organisation can do it alone.

As conference chairs, our vision of ASLM2016 is to combat global health threats and accelerate local solutions together. We can achieve this by harnessing the collective knowledge of participants to develop innovative, pragmatic solutions and ways of working together.

We invite you to join us for ASLM2016 in Cape Town, 3-8 December 2016 – it promises to be our most successful gathering so far. If you have not already registered, please do so here.

Further details of the ASLM2016 vision and special profile interviews with the co-chairs can be found here at: Professor Anthony Emeribe and Professor Wendy Stevens.

We look forward to seeing you very soon.

Your conference chairs,

Prof. Anthony Emeribe
Medical Laboratory Science Council of Nigeria; University of Calabar, Nigeria

Prof. Wendy Stevens
University of Witwatersrand; National Health Laboratory Service, South Africa