Photos: Inaugural Operational Excellence meeting, Amsterdam

13 December, 2018 | Global Partnership for Zero Leprosy

 Managers from national leprosy programmes, along with representatives from ILEP organizations, are directing the upcoming efforts of the Operational Excellence working group.  They travelled from afar to participate in the inaugural Operational Excellence meeting, held 6-7 December in Amsterdam.

Amsterdam, 6 and 7 December 2018

Amsterdam, 6 and 7 December 2018

It is winter in the Netherlands, and the weather is wet and stormy. Ten people from Benin, Brazil, Ethiopia, Morocco, Nepal, Sri Lanka and the United Kingdom are traveling from afar to attend the inaugural meeting of the Operational Excellence steering team in Amsterdam.

Leaders from national leprosy programmes

Leaders from national leprosy programmes

The group who traveled to Amsterdam represent the steering team, or the leaders of the Operational Excellence sub-groups. The chairs of the sub-groups are from national leprosy programmes. Pictured here is Dr. Taye Letta from the national leprosy programme in Ethiopia. Dr. Letta is also on the partnership’s leadership team.

Planning and preparation

Planning and preparation

Day 1: In small groups, the steering team discussed the many tasks ahead. The group will develop online tools that can help countries reduce leprosy and stigma, and will also offer support through a help desk. Working closely with the World Health Organization, this working group will also conduct peer-to-peer country assessments, and help countries develop visioning roadmaps to zero leprosy.

WHO’s involvement

WHO’s involvement

During the meeting, Erwin Cooreman and Rao Pemmaraju from the WHO Global Leprosy Programme gave a virtual presentation about the Global Leprosy Strategy and plans beyond. As key partners, they emphasized the importance to work together to build national capacity through aligned efforts. One example will be the collaboration between WHO and the Operational Excellence Working Group to conduct country assessments.

Enjoying dinner at China Sea Palace

Enjoying dinner at China Sea Palace

After a long day’s work, the group enjoyed a boat ride on Amsterdam’s canals and afterward, a delicious dinner at the culinary China Sea Palace, a floating restaurant in the heart of Amsterdam. Dr. Ibtissam Khoudri (Morocco) is pictured with Dr. Rabindra Baskota (Nepal).