International Training (e.g. Academy) events during COVID-19 pandemic

@maxk and others organising training,

Are you analysing the participants in various academies in terms of their origin and the risk / interventions related to COVID-19?

I have several reasons for raising the issue:
1.
Similar conferences etc are being cancelled left right and centre…
2.
The quarantine rules followed by each country changes every day depending on which countries are seen as new hotspots, so participants in international events do risk arriving at the airport and then being sent off for 14 days quarantine - not a very nice experience…

And then there’s the risk that one or more participants do carry the virus and end up transmitting it to other participants. Since the training sessions typically are around 4-7 days, it’s just enough time for somebody to arrive without symptoms, become symptomatic/infectious during the course, and infect others who again will be going back to their home countries without symptoms during their travel home.

Maybe less important, but transmission during a health information training event might end up being an embarrassment…

Regards
Calle

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Hi @Calle_Hedberg – thanks for bringing this up. We have been having conversations about this at University of Oslo in relation to our Academies that are scheduled to start over the next few weeks.

So far, we are assessing them on a case-by-case basis, using guidance from the Norwegian foreign ministry and department of public health among other sources. Some things we are considering are quarantine rules in the countries where the trainings are taking place, and the state of COVID-19 spread in the countries where facilitators and participants are traveling from.

As you noted, we made the decision to move ahead with our Academy in Accra, Ghana this week. Some individual participants elected to cancel their attendance, either due to their own evaluations or due to the current travel guidelines of the institutions they represent, but the majority who had registered chose to attend.

We are certainly interested in getting more feedback and input from the community on this. If we do choose to cancel or reschedule any events, that information will be shared as soon as possible. For events that we decide to move forward with as scheduled, we certainly encourage individual participants to take the risk of COVID-19 transmission into their own considerations.

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Just an update to share what we have decided to postpone the DHIS2 Academies that were previously scheduled to take place in March, April, and early May. Events after that point are still under review. Registration for the Annual Conference will remain open, and we hope to be able to host that event as scheduled from June 16-19.

Ideally, we would like to reschedule all postponed Academies for the second half of 2020, but this is dependent on how the situation with the coronavirus pandemic develops. We will also wait to open registration for other Academies until the situation has stabilized. Please consult the schedule on our website for ongoing updates: https://dhis2.org/academy

We will also look into the possibility of offering more online training, such as webinars or other virtual courses. Any information will be posted on the Community of Practice and announced via our newsletter.

For more information, please see our COVID-19 Update email here: https://mailchi.mp/dhis2/covid-19-updates-dhis2-tracker-released-academy-schedule

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