Remarks by Ambassador Sison at the Field Epidemiology Training Program Graduation (FETP)

Monsieur Director General of MSPP

Monsieur Director of the Directorate of Epidemiology, Laboratory and Research

Monsieur National Coordinator of FETP-Haiti

Monsieur Vice-Dean of the Medical School

FETP graduates

And my distinguished colleagues – Bonjour.

It is an honor to be here this morning to commemorate the Field Epidemiology Training Program (FETP) graduation of the third and fourth Frontline cohorts and the seventh Intermediate Cohort. I commend the leadership of the Ministry of Health – your initiative to build the capacity of your public health workforce is an example of your commitment to the health and wellbeing of the people of Haiti. It is truly a great pleasure to be among the 60 new FETP-Graduates. Congratulations on a tremendous accomplishment.

The Field Epidemiology Training Program is modeled on the United States’ own best practices. It’s based on CDC’s Epidemic Intelligence Service and focuses on building capacity to prevent, detect, and respond to disease threats. FETP residents provide public health services while gaining essential skills to collect, analyze, and use data to prioritize health issues and to help inform decisions. The implementation of the FETP demonstrates MSPP’s dedication towards increasing capacity among public health workers to respond to public health outbreaks and improve surveillance data reporting. It is because of partnerships like the Ministry of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that we can progress toward a world safe and secure from disease threats. These partnerships are the foundation of global health security. The impact of the training you have undertaken extends beyond your community, your region, or even your country. Disease knows no borders, but with the skills you have acquired through the FETP – we are better equipped to stop public health threats.

Today, we recognize the FETP residents who completed the intensive three-month and nine-month training curricula. You are joining a notable network of 300 other FETP graduates, most of whom continue to work in MSPP providing critical epidemiological services. The training you received will be invaluable to Haiti’s public health system. I applaud you and your dedication to being on the frontlines of emerging disease detection and response.

Throughout your training, you have investigated suspected disease cases and provided evidence-based recommendations to your departmental health authorities. Among your cohorts are surveillance officers, physicians, nurses, laboratory technicians, veterinarians, and health professionals at all levels of the public health system. The team effort between the FETP graduates and the Ministry of Health throughout this on-the-job training program is exceptional. You will now serve as leaders and mentors for future FETP residents.

I also want to point out, Mr. Director General, that we are well aware that President Moise and the Government of Haiti’s seven priority axes of development highlight the importance of the health sector.  The United States wants to partner with Haiti in health in alignment with these priorities, as we work together to support the people of Haiti.

Once again, congratulations to the 60 FETP graduates. Thank you for your outstanding work ethic. I know my colleagues at the CDC and I are humbled to be included in the collaborative efforts with everyone present at this celebration. Congratulations to the Ministry of Health, the Haiti Field Epidemiology Training Program, and the new graduates. With this investment, Haiti is taking another crucial step toward health security and we look forward to supporting your continued progress.