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The Middle East Consortium on Infectious Disease Surveillance (MECIDS)

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The Middle East Consortium on Infectious Disease Surveillance (MECIDS)The Middle East Consortium on Infectious Disease Surveillance (MECIDS) was created in November 2002 on the basis of recommendations made by Middle Eastern health and medical professionals participating in a Search for Common Ground meeting on regional cooperation on disease surveillance. Its vision is to promote long-term health, stability and security in the region. MECIDS members and partners come from governments, universities, and non-governmental organizations. The members include Jordanian Ministry of Health, Israeli Ministry of Health, Palestinian Ministry of Health, Cooperative Monitoring Center @ Amman, Tel Aviv University and Al Quds University.

MECIDS hopes to build capacity within each nation to deal with a disease outbreak, whether naturally occurring or deliberately caused. In addition, we are building confidence-intangible human relationships that is helping to ease the relations on a daily basis and that is essential for managing a cross-border crisis. The consortium's first project was to develop an enhanced foodborne disease surveillance system in Israel, Jordan, and the Palestinian territories. Participants are using this web site to share data routinely about the incidence of particular diseases such as Salmonella, and they will agree on procedures for communicating in the case of an outbreak that threatens their populations.

At the annual MECIDS conference in January 2007, the MECIDS members took an important step towards transitioning to a self-sustaining consortium run by MECIDS members. During this meeting the MECIDS partners agreed upon a new governance structure, elected a MECIDS Executive Chairperson, and formed an Executive Board.

The Middle East Consortium on Infectious Disease Surveillance (MECIDS)

Search for Common Ground (SFCG) is providing staff support to MECIDS, including a Secretariat to MECIDS Executive Board who facilitates communication among consortium members, sets and monitors deadlines for action, and performs other functions as needed.

MECIDS is a collaboration of national and international organizations including:

  • Al Quds University
  • Cooperative Monitoring Center in Amman, Jordan
  • European Programme on Intervention Epidemiology Training
  • Ministry of Health, Israel
  • Ministry of Health, Jordan
  • Ministry of Health, Palestinian Authority
  • Sandia National Laboratories
  • Search for Common Ground
  • Tel Aviv University
  • NTI's Global Health and Security Initiative
  • World Health Organization



MECIDS has begun operations with two major cooperative projects and has taken on Avian Influenza since 2005.

::Enhanced Surveillance for Detection of Foodborne Epidemics In the framework of MECIDS, we wish to establish national laboratory-based surveillance networks for foodborne diseases in Jordan, Israel, Palestine and Egypt that will be conduct surveillance according to harmonized methodology, will have a common platform of communication, data sharing and analysis.more

::Interventional Field Epidemiology Course The Middle East Consortium on Infectious Disease Surveillance (MECIDS), in collaboration with the European Programme for Intervention Epidemiology Training (EPIET), will conduct the first regional epidemiological training course for the Middle East in September 2004.more

::MECIDS Work to Battle Avian Influenza in the Region As avian influenza ("bird flu") reaches the Mediterranean region.and with it, fears that the disease could infect humans.the region.s ability to deal with a human influenza pandemic climbs higher on the list of global priorities. Over the last three years, the Middle East Consortium on Infectious Disease Surveillance (MECIDS) has built an infrastructure in the region to help nations cooperate in managing disease outbreaks and now it has taken on Avian Influenza. Palestine, Israel, and Jordan's Ministries of Health and Agriculture started to plan for the battle against avian influenza long before the threat came to the region. In the Middle East Consortium on Infectious Disease Surveillance (MECIDS) annual meeting in June of 2005, members decided to take on avian influenza, they agreed that influenza, even more than foodborne diseases, does not respect national boundaries and that international planning is essential. Despite the changing and unstable political situation in this region, both before and after the appearance of the H5N1 virus in poultry in February, 2006, MECIDS managed to meet several times (more) to draft a sub-regional common plan of action for the three neighboring countries and to manage and control this deadly virus.

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Last Updated ( Thursday, 03 July 2008 09:46 )  

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