Editorial: The Lancet Infectious Diseases – Published: March 2017
There is great hope for the new Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC), which was officially launched in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, on Jan 31. The Africa CDC is Africa’s first continent-wide public health agency, and it will be headed by John Nkengasong, who worked for more than 20 years for the US CDC. The aim of the Africa CDC will be to establish early warning and response surveillance systems, respond to emergencies, build capacity, and provide technical expertise to address health emergencies in a timely and effective manner. Although at the moment there is optimism regarding Africa CDC, insufficient funding is the key element that could hamper implementation of any programme in the field. Moreover, issues with bureaucracy and limited capacity to recruit and retain experienced epidemiologists have already been identified for the new agency.