EMPHNET has been playing an active role in supporting FETPs across the EMR in their efforts to combat the Coronavirus threat. Believing that the sharing of relevant knowledge is key in such instances, it has activated its networking platform EpiShares to its full capacity for this cause. Not only has it created a page titled “Coronavirus Updates” to post hourly updates on the Virus and its spread, but it has also created a private group titled “FETP Professionals” which serves as a space for FETP directors, advisors, and coordinators to discuss key issues of concern in this regard. The group also allows its members to upload documents, and is a space for sharing meeting minutes, meeting agendas, and activities planned in response to the outbreak. While group is exclusive to specific members, the page is open for public view. You can access EpiShares to be updated on this issue and other public health issues via www.epishares.net.
Also in the area of knowledge sharing, EMPHNET also produces a daily news round-up that it disseminates widely. The purpose of this update is to provide authentic news and to ensure that it is filtered from the rumors that do crowd public media sources. Believing in the significance of FETPs and their work in such instances , EMPHNET is also publishing weekly bulletins highlighting their achievements, and to hear more from FETP Directors, and mainly to know how it can support them, EMPHNET has been diligently organizing weekly conference calls with them as well.
On the technical level, EMPHNET’s Public Health Emergency Management Center (PHMIC) has been the hub for collecting technical information from the programs, disseminating information relevant to the programs, and coordinating response efforts. Some activities in the pipelines include training sessions of relevance to the coronavirus, the dissemination of guidelines, the regular sharing of technical updates, the organization of case study discussions, and others.
PHEMC is in constant contact with programs and other partners to coordinate response to this virus in the region. Finally, in the area of visibility, EMPHNET is making efforts to highlight the significance of the work done by FETPs. It is making efforts to post photos of their work on EpiShares, requesting videos from the field, and also ensuring that they stand out from the crowd by developing vests for them to wear while in service. EMPHNET has assisted FETP Jordan and other programs in the development of communication materials as well.
To organize these efforts, EMPHNET has also created a core team that meets daily to discuss next steps in its response plan. The team comprises technical experts from PHEMC, its Center of Excellence for Applied Epidemiology, alongside representatives from supporting domains like Knowledge Exchange and Networking and ICT. This team coordinates with the rest of the organization to ensure that efforts made are in their place and are of relevance. All these activities are just the first steps taken by EMPHNET, FETPs, and other stakeholders to alleviate the effect of Coronavirus in the region and on the masses.