The East African Community’s aspiration to improve the quality of life of the people of the East African region lies at the heart of our pursuit for wider and deeper economic, political, social and cultural integration. The Treaty for the Establishment of the East African Community recognizes the manifest correlation between a healthy population and a competitive region. Competitiveness, which spurs increased trade and investment, starts with economic productivity. Economic productivity is a futile pursuit in the absence of robust health infrastructure, including mechanisms for sharing information and knowledge at a regional level.
While article 71(b) empowers the EAC secretariat to the initiation of studies and research related to, and the implementation of programmes for the most appropriate, expeditious and efficient ways of achieving the objectives of the Community, Article 118 (e) and (f) of the Treaty exhorts the Partner States to take joint action to harmonize national health policies and regulations and promote the exchange of information on health issues in order to achieve quality Health within the Community; and Promote the management of health delivery systems and better planning mechanisms to enhance efficiency of health care services within the Partner States. To this end, the EAC secretariat has taken steps to ensure this is achieved.
The Report of the needs assessment of the East African Community Knowledge Management and Partner States Knowledge Platforms/Systems is therefore very important because it provides a clear understanding of the situation on KM in the region and is a firm foundation for sharping the efforts geared toward improving KM systems and practices in the EAC region.
This report is the product of the commitment of resources such as time and knowledge by a variety of stakeholders— many of who are leading experts in their fields. It is a document of the highest quality, having been subjected to rigorous scrutiny, first through various validation workshops at national and regional levels, and finally through a stringent peer review process. A report of such significance demanded no less.