Panel of speakers for the opening session of the ASLM Annual Meeting in Cape Town, South Africa
Dr. Trevor Peter, chair of the ASLM conference,
makes opening remarks at the ASLM Annual
Meeting in Cape Town, South Africa
Distinguished keynote speaker, the Honorable Dr.
Aaron Motsoaledi, South African Minister of Health,
speaks at the opening of the Annual ASLM conference
Audience members listen intently during the ASLM
Annual Meeting in Cape Town, South Africa
Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s introduction to the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) Blueprint, which was issued in November 2012, says it is a US government imperative to work toward an AIDS-free generation as “not just a rallying cry” but a “goal that is within our reach.
” The blueprint encourages support for the African Society for Laboratory Medicine (ASLM) in order to
strengthen technical capacity in the PEPFAR African countries. APHL has worked to develop a strong
collaborative relationship with this nascent organization, and continues to work with leadership from this
group on important laboratory strengthening initiatives.
The African Society for Laboratory Medicine was established through the Maputo declaration and
Kampala statement, which called for the prioritization of laboratory systems and the development of
laboratory strategic plans. APHL, a key partner supporting this vision through PEPFAR, participated in the
launch of the society at the March 2011 inaugural meeting held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. APHL has continued
to support the society during the past two years through participation on the Board of Directors, and by
supporting technical assistance and training projects.
APHL leadership and global health staff participated in the first international meeting of the society in December
2012, presenting posters and sessions related to laboratory strengthening initiatives. Held in Cape Town, South
Africa, this important conference was attended by more than 1,400 people from 36 countries. The conference
produced a document calling for the signatories to take further action to strengthen African laboratory systems.
The key focus of the meeting included:
• Problem-solving to improve access to, regulation of, and policy regarding quality point-of-care laboratory
diagnostics for quality health care in Africa and elsewhere.
• Discussing ways to strengthen laboratory-based surveillance, biosafety and biosecurity, and to reduce
• Prioritizing and enhancing mobilization and utilization of resources for local capacity.
• Operationalizing laboratory research to meet evolving disease needs in the 21st century.
• Exchanging knowledge, skills, and best practices to improve access to high-quality laboratory services.
• Sharing experiences on establishing functional laboratory networks for disease-specific needs and for
APHL will explore the establishment of a formal memorandum of understanding with ASLM to deepen the
collaboration. APHL will also pursue possibilities to collaborate on networking, cross-border work, association
development, strategic planning and training activities. u