Journal of Public Health Policy

, Volume 33, Issue 1, pp 34–45 | Cite as

Laboratory equipment maintenance: A critical bottleneck for strengthening health systems in sub-Saharan Africa?

  • Peter N Fonjungo
  • Yenew Kebede
  • Tsehaynesh Messele
  • Gonfa Ayana
  • Gudeta Tibesso
  • Almaz Abebe
  • John N Nkengasong
  • Thomas Kenyon
Original Article

Abstract

Properly functioning laboratory equipment is a critical component for strengthening health systems in developing countries. The laboratory can be an entry point to improve population health and care of individuals for targeted diseases – prevention, care, and treatment of TB, HIV/AIDS, and malaria, plus maternal and neonatal health – as well as those lacking specific attention and funding. We review the benefits and persistent challenges associated with sustaining laboratory equipment maintenance. We propose equipment management policies as well as a comprehensive equipment maintenance strategy that would involve equipment manufacturers and strengthen local capacity through pre-service training of biomedical engineers. Strong country leadership and commitment are needed to assure development and sustained implementation of policies and strategies for standardization of equipment, and regulation of its procurement, donation, disposal, and replacement.

Keywords

laboratory equipment maintenance developing countries 

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Copyright information

© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Ltd 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Peter N Fonjungo
    • 1
  • Yenew Kebede
    • 1
  • Tsehaynesh Messele
    • 2
  • Gonfa Ayana
    • 2
  • Gudeta Tibesso
    • 2
  • Almaz Abebe
    • 2
  • John N Nkengasong
    • 3
  • Thomas Kenyon
    • 1
  1. 1.Division of Global HIV/AIDSCenter for Global Health, Centers for Disease Control and PreventionAddis AbabaEthiopia
  2. 2.Ethiopian Health and Nutrition Research InstituteAddis AbabaEthiopia
  3. 3.Division of Global HIV/AIDSCenter for Global Health, Centers for Disease Control and PreventionAtlantaUSA

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