According to the US-Taiwan Global Cooperation Training Framework (GCTF), the U.S. and Taiwan have co-organized the four-day International Training Workshop on Laboratory Diagnosis for Enterovirus that starts on April 23, 2018 in the hope to improve the regional diagnostic capacity for enteroviruses. Participants include public health officials and laboratory professionals from New Southbound Policy partner countries. Several distinguished guests, including the Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs François Wu Chih-chung (吳志中), and the Director of the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) Kin Moy (梅健華).
Enterovirus 71 (EV-71) caused a large-scale outbreak that led to many severe cases and deaths respectively in Malaysia in 1997 and Taiwan in 1998. Since then, enteroviruses have continued to pose significant public health threats to Taiwan and countries in the Asia-Pacific region. In addition, a large-scale EV-D68 outbreak occurred in the U.S. in August 2014. On top of that, a significant number of the infected children developed Acute Flaccid Myelitis (AFM), and some children even died. Similar outbreaks have also continued to occur around the world.
Under GCTF, since 2015, the U.S. and Taiwan have co-organized several workshops, including the International Training Course on Molecular Diagnosis for MERS-CoV, the International Conference on Dengue Prevention and Control and the International Dengue Expert Consultation Meeting, the International Training Workshop on Molecular Diagnosis for Zika, and the International Training Workshop on Laboratory Diagnosis for Dengue/Zika/Chikungunya. The International Workshop on Laboratory Diagnosis for Enterovirus teaches the molecular method for detecting enterovirus infection and demonstrates the use of EV-71 Rapid Test Kit developed by the Taiwan Centers for Disease Control (Taiwan CDC) in order to help participating countries in rapidly diagnose EV-71 infections and prevent the spread of the virus.
31 laboratory professionals from 15 countries, including Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Singapore, Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mongolia, Nepal, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Vietnam, and the U.S. are participating in this workshop. Experts from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Japan's National Institute of Infectious Diseases (NIID) are attending the workshop as the lecturers to help refine the diagnostic capacity for enteroviruses, improve the regional capacity to tackle infectious diseases, reinforce global health security, and ward off the threats posed by infectious diseases around the world.