In Algeria, workers are exposed to biological risks in various fields. I have been working at Pasteur Institute of Algeria since 2011 as a research-associate in vaccine production and development, I recently had the great opportunity to get my IFBA certification, consequently, my opinion towards Biorisk Management has been taken into account by my managers and colleagues; also, they have become more curious about this interesting field, they are therefore more aware and open to get involved in Biorisk prevention strategies. In order to play an important role, they want to be trained and certified, but it’s not affordable for everyone to self-fund the courses and the exam fees, for this reason, I reckon that sponsoring people around the world and paying for their exam fees is more than necessary to improve Biorisk Management especially in low income countries.
Personally, being sponsored to take the exam helped me to become an IFBA Professional Certified in Biorisk Management and also allowed me to be appointed as Biorisk Management delegate in my laboratory and participate in training sessions and workshops for this purpose. Just after that, we started to create a working group with interested teammates to improve Biosafety and Biosecurity at our workplaces and environment, we had begun to develop a plan for the existing procedures related to Biorisk Management implementation, then identify the different hazards, risks and biological threats in each step, then, we started the Biorisk assessment with the BioRAM software. Our first founding gave us an overview about some common factors related to the likelihood and high consequences of Biorisk, such as: waste management, inadequate personal protective equipment, equipment maintenance and the inappropriate storage of some biological material. Thanks to the IFBA Biorisk Management certification that has given me the necessary eligibility and qualifications, my colleagues and I were able to convince the administration to provide us with inexpensive but necessary equipment to make the existing risks acceptable, waiting for more complex improvements.
Recently, I had the honor to represent my country by participating in an international Biorisk Management event “BIORIM 2019” held in Tunisia, which led to the creation of the Biorisk Management MENA-Network. All these events that have occurred recently have allowed me to improve my scientific career and broaden my social and professional network; this will undoubtedly lead me to play a relevant role locally and internationally.