ISDS created the Member Highlight series as a way to highlight member achievements, interests, and inspirations. This month we showcase ISDS member Hayat Khogali, who was a recipient of a 2014 Skoll Global Threats Fund International Travel Award.
How did you first learn about disease surveillance and when did you decide that it was an area of interest for you? When I was doing my master degree in Epidemiology and Biostatistics but then when I start working in HIV/AIDS Control program and from there to the Epidemiology department I identified it as area of interest for me!
What do you do?
Head of National Epidemiology and Zoonotic Disease program,- FMOH, SUDAN. Also I work with universities and colleges to teach and supervise under and post-graduate medical student in public health.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
Working as team with my staff and colleagues, success in identified outbreak and combating outbreaks! Establishing coordination mechanisms with different partners and different sectors and transfer knowledge and experience to student and staff.
What excites you in the work you do?
Learning something new every day! Especially when it comes to communicable disease and zoonosis, looking at the trend of the disease.
Who or what inspires you professionally?
My parents as they keep supporting me in all my steps and in developing my career, also my professors they trust that I can do good work and be professional in my work and I’m inspired by their words and trying to doing the best I can.
What is your proudest professional accomplishment or achievement (related to disease surveillance)?
As I believe in partnership, I sm developing a great partnership between FMOH and Ministry of Animal Recourses and agriculture, which reflected in linking Animal with Human Surveillance, continuous sharing of information and Joint mission, which could be one step in achieving the Integrated surveillance and One Health Concepts! Also I started the Integrated Disease Surveillance and Response projects for Sudan (First country in EMRO Region to start this IDSR) with WHO support. Currently we are in the pilot stage in two states. Recently I started new project for community-based surveillance among special group (high mobile/nomads population) along with Health Information and other partners.
How long have you been involved with ISDS?
Last six months.
Why are you an ISDS member?
Because that where I belong! It is always good to be member of society that speak the same language, understand surveillance more, share experience and learn from other experiences, get new ideas and update in the area.
What do you hope to get out of your ISDS membership?
This is a great opportunity for me and for my county, get access to technical forums/ platforms regard disease surveillance, support and opinions in work, in addition to newsletters, transfer of knowledge and idea to staff and students in public health and advocate for the ISDS among other colleagues and link them to the society. Also being involved in more community work in my country and globally in regard to surveillance.
What is the biggest issue in disease surveillance (in your opinion)?
Quality of data is always the biggest issue that need training, monitoring and supervision m because a lot of designs while be taken based on this data.
If you were not the Head of National Epidemiology and Zoonotic Disease program,- FMOH, SUDAN, what would you be?
Still I would love to be Public Health person and working in communicable disease surveillance! The opportunity to be doing something new. I always feared doing research that was “more of the same”, but in my work with syndromic surveillance in animal health I really feel that we are doing innovative, groundbreaking work.