Getting ready for ICAHS2!

The conference is getting closer day by day! We hope you have downloaded the programme - and if you have, be aware that there have been quite regular updates, so ensure you have the latest version.

The short oral paper poll, where participants of the conference will have the opportunity to select a paper that will be invited to give a full plenary presentation, will be launched in the coming weeks. An invitation to vote will be sent out to all presenters as well as those who are not presenting but have registered for the conference. So make sure to register soon to get the opportunity to influence the programme.

Conference Content

Similar to the first ICAHS in 2011, ICAHS2 will provide a platform for discussion and interaction among surveillance stakeholders - researchers, risk managers, animal health managers and other decision makers - to foster a better dialog between science and policy in the field of animal health surveillance. The conference will include both discussions about scientific and technical issues and will also explore how scientists and policy makers can collaborate to facilitate the implementation of effective and efficient surveillance methods.

The overarching theme for ICAHS2 is “Surveillance against the odds”, a theme that encompasses the wide range of challenges that surveillance professionals face in their daily work; from working in resource-constrained communities, demonstrating the absence of disease in wildlife, making full use of the potential of molecular information or trying to integrate surveillance information across sectors ranging from public health to veterinary medicine to aid joint decision making and signal sharing.

The scientific aspects will include presentations and discussion about both the design and implementation of surveillance for different purposes. This will include early detection, assessing the level and distribution of disease and demonstrating freedom from infection. Contributions describing surveillance activities for endemic, exotic and emerging diseases in livestock, wildlife and aquatic populations in both developed and developing countries will be welcomed.

All aspects of the surveillance process will be considered including the collection, transmission, management and analysis of data. A variety of surveillance approaches will be discussed as will the value and evaluation of surveillance systems including considerations of efficiency, equivalence, cost-effectiveness and quality.

The interaction between science and policy will be addressed by investigating the role of collaboration, information sharing and communication in facilitating the implementation of surveillance. This will include exploring the interface between the scientific community, those providing surveillance information and those financing these investigations.

Contributions on organisational issues such as incentives to encourage stakeholder participation, cost-sharing, the requirement for an appropriate legislative framework and links with public health surveillance will be welcomed. The dissemination of surveillance information, setting priorities, decision support systems and the provision of training will also be considered.

We aim to present inspiring plenary contributions, as well as high quality talks and posters where “theory” meets “application” with the goal to identify and seek solutions to current problems and future needs for surveillance in science as well as in and policy.

By using interactive technologies, participants will also be involved in exploring a set of researchable issues related to the topic of the conference, thereby allowing scientists and decision makers to co-define recommendations that will ultimately improve surveillance and control of relevant animal diseases.

Venue and concurrent CaribVET meeting

The 2nd International Conference on Animal Health Surveillance (ICAHS2) will take place between 7-9 May 2014, at Palacio de las Convenciones, Havana, Cuba.

To further facilitate the interaction with policy makers, the conference will be preceded by the 9th Steering Committee Meeting of the Caribbean Animal Health Network, CaribVET. The 9th CaribVET Steering Committee Meeting will be organized on 5-6 May 2014.

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