Press Briefing on COVID-19 in Africa and the U.S. Response

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Media Advisory | April 2, 2020 Briefing on COVID-19 in Africa and the U.S. response with Dr. Meredith McMorrow, Medical Officer in the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Influenza Division and Dr. John Nkengasong, Director Africa CDC


EVENT:

Please join us on Thursday, April 2, 2020, for a digital press briefing with Dr. Meredith McMorrow, Medical Officer in the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Influenza Division and Dr. John Nkengasong, Director Africa CDC. Our speakers will provide a briefing on the U.S. response to the COVID-19 pandemic in Africa and coordination efforts with national governments on the continent.


DETAILS:

Speaker: Dr. Meredith McMorrow, Medical Officer in the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Influenza Division, and Dr. John Nkengasong, Director Africa CDC

Date: Thursday, April 2, 2020

Time: 12:00 SAST (Johannesburg) | 10:00 UTC

* Please use Time Zone Converter to determine the start time of the event in your time zone.

Language: English

Ground rules: On the record

Twitter: We will use the hashtag #AFHubPress as the hashtag for the call. Follow us on @AfricaMediaHub and at @USAfricaCommand.

Bios:

Dr. Meredith McMorrow, MD MPH

Medical Officer, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Influenza Division

Meredith McMorrow, MD MPH is a medical officer in the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Influenza Division and an officer in the US Public Health Service. Since 2012 she has been working on influenza research activities in Ghana, Kenya, Malawi and South Africa. She also supports influenza surveillance and influenza vaccine policy work in Kenya and Uganda.

Prior to joining the Influenza Division she worked in CDC’s Malaria Branch where she conducted research on quality assurance of malaria diagnostics, worked on a Phase III malaria vaccine trial, and led a study of health outcomes among febrile children who test negative for malaria by rapid diagnostic test. She also supported the President’s Malaria Initiative in Mali for 5 years.

Dr. McMorrow received an undergraduate degree in Biology at Stanford University. She attended medical school at Tulane University where she also received a Masters of Public Health.


Dr. John Nkengasong
Director Africa CDC


Dr John Nkengasong was appointed first Director of Africa CDC in November 2016 to provide strategic direction and position it as an African-owned institution supporting countries to improve surveillance, preparedness, response and prevention of disease threats. He is a leading virologist with nearly 30 years of work experience in public health.

Prior to his appointment with Africa CDC, he was Associate Director of Laboratory Science and Chief of the International Laboratory Branch at the Division of Global HIV/AIDS, Center for Global Health at the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Earlier in his career (1993 to 1995), Dr. Nkengasong worked for the WHO as Chief of Virology at the Collaborating Centre on HIV Diagnostics at the Department of Microbiology, Institute of Tropical Medicine, Antwerp, Belgium and later joined US CDC in 1995 as Chief of the Virology Laboratory in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire.

Dr. Nkengasong has over 120 publications focusing particularly on HIV diagnosis, pathogenesis and drug resistance in internationally revered journals such as The Lancet, Journal of Virology, Journal of Infectious Diseases, and Journal of Clinical Microbiology. He has written multiple book chapters on HIV therapy in resource-constrained settings.

Dr. Nkengasong has received several awards and recognitions, including the US Secretary of Health and Human Services Award for Excellence in Public Health Protection Research, multiple Director’s Recognition Awards, and the National Order of the Republic of Cote d’Ivoire for his outstanding work in public health in that country. He has been nominated for the US Agency’s prestigious Shepard Award many times and continues to serve on numerous international advisory boards and journal review panels. He led the processes leading to the establishment of the African Society for Laboratory Medicine.

Dr. Nkengasong holds a master’s degree in tropical biomedical science from the Institute of Tropical Medicine, Antwerp, Belgium, a master’s degree in medical and pharmaceutical sciences and a doctorate degree in medical sciences (virology) from the University of Brussels School of Medicine, Belgium. He also holds a certificate in management and leadership from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University. Dr. Nkengasong speaks fluent English and French.

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LOGISTICS

  • Participants should log in to join the conference 10 minutes early.
  • Participants will be asked to type in their name, press affiliation, and location.
  • The speakers will give brief opening remarks, and then the moderator will open the floor to questions.
  • Participants will be instructed to type their questions or indicate to the moderator in the chat that they wish to ask a live question. You may also submit questions in advance when you RSVP on Eventbrite or send them via email to afmediahub@state.gov.
  • If you experience technical difficulties during the briefing, you may send an email to afmediahub@state.gov to alert the moderator to any issues.


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