The German G7 Global Health Program
As a direct implication of the 2015 G7 summit in Elmau, Germany is increasing its efforts in supporting partner countries in response to outbreaks and in the implementation of resilient healthcare systems. A main focus lies on strengthening international activities in the field of infectious diseases.
In this context, the Federal Ministry of Health has launched the “G7 Global Health Program”.
Within the program, the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), as the national public health authority, is tasked with contributing to building capacities in outbreak and crisis response, strengthening basic healthcare in less-resourced countries, implementing International Health Regulations and fighting antimicrobial resistance.
Partner agencies in the implementation of the program are the Federal Institute for Drugs and Medical Devices (BfArM), the Paul Ehrlich Institute for Vaccines and Biomedicines (PEI) and the Bernhard Nocht Institute for tropical medicine (BNI).
Targeted projects in the field of capacity building include topics such as:
- Scientific training on a rational approach to antibiotic treatment regimens (BfArM);
- Training for healthcare staff in self- and community-protection during outbreaks of life-threatening infectious diseases (RKI);
- Training and exercises on interventional field epidemiology and crisis response (RKI);
- Postgraduate training of scientific personnel from partner countries in German research institutes: focus on advanced diagnostic techniques for dangerous pathogens endemic in the respective partner countries (RKI).
Examples for efforts in strengthening basic healthcare include:
- The RKI/BNI joint initiative “Organise Response to Disease Epidemics maintaining Routine Health Care (ORDER-HC)”;
- Support in the development of a regulatory framework for accessibility, safety and quality assurance of blood products and adaption to large-scale-emergency preparedness in partner countries (PEI);
- Training and advice on regulations for immunization (PEI).
Other activities are closely linked to essential research topics in the context of enhancing infectious disease preparedness globally. A typical example is an RKI project exploring etiology, burden of disease and antimicrobial resistance patterns of nosocomial bacterial infections in partner countries.
Currently, the overall program is planned to run for five years with an annual budget of around 4M€.
Within the Robert Koch Institute, the Units for Surveillance, Immunization, Healthcare-associated Infections and the Centre for Biological Threats and Special Pathogens are involved in specific projects of the program. The executive department for “Global Health and Biosecurity” acts as overall coordinator.
For further information contact Dr. Cornelius Bartels at BartelsC@rki.de