Nigeria has taken important steps to improve its ability to find, stop and prevent disease outbreaks and other health threats before they get out of control: It has conducted a Joint External Evaluation with the World Health Organization to measure its readiness, developed a National Action Plan for Health Security to fill preparedness gaps, and passed legislation to empower the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control to coordinate outbreak prevention and response. While exploring ways to generate additional domestic resources for epidemic preparedness, the Nigerian government receives temporary funding through the World Bank’s Regional Disease Surveillance Systems Enhancement (REDISSE) program.
Despite ongoing progress, PreventEpidemics.org has called Nigeria “Not Ready” for the next major disease outbreak, giving the country a ReadyScore of 39 out of 100 due to significant preparedness gaps identified by the Joint External Evaluation.
Be part of the solution by highlighting ways to address Nigeria’s readiness challenge through your reporting! Help to raise the profile of epidemic preparedness and generate support for robust epidemic preparedness funding. After all, it’s not a question of if but when the next disease outbreak will occur.
Nigeria Health Watch will award three fellowships to outstanding journalists with a passion for covering epidemic preparedness. Fellows will receive financial support for the 3 month period, to complete their reporting, as well as continued coaching and support accessing national and international data and contacts, among other benefits.
Interested applicants would include link to one published article after this masterclass (published either in blogs, newspapers or SoundCloud link of radio shows). Articles that are relevant to federal funding for epidemic preparedness are particularly welcome. These articles must not have been published anywhere but through the media house you work for or your own platform.
Below are some themes selected applicants can plan their stories around:
- Epidemics preparedness as a political issue
- Current state of Nigeria’s funding epidemics preparedness
- The economic costs of Nigeria’s poor epidemic preparedness
- How NCDC funds the response to epidemic outbreaks
- Existing gaps in current funding pattern for epidemic preparedness.
- How lack of sustained funding of Nigeria’s public health institutes make epidemic outbreaks catastrophic
- Public awareness about epidemics preparedness in Nigeria
Articles links should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org on or before Sunday, March 31, 2019.