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Global Health Programs: Integrated Disease Surveillance and Response

Objective

Integrated Disease Surveillance and Response (IDSR) is a strategy of the World Health Organization African Regional Office (WHO AFRO) in partnership with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). IDSR aims to improve the availability and use of surveillance and laboratory data for detection, response and control of priority infectious diseases that are the leading cause of death, disability, and illness in the African region. The core capacities for national surveillance systems required for compliance with the International Health Regulations (2005) are being implemented in the African region through the IDSR framework. IDSR has three main goals which are to strengthen health systems and capacities to carry out public health surveillance and responses to priority diseases at each level of the health system, integrate surveillance and laboratory support, and translate surveillance and laboratory data into specific and timely public health actions.

Program Description

CDC, through funding from USAID and other partners, provides technical assistance to WHO AFRO and African ministries of health through a cross-center partnership led by the Center for Global Health in the design, development, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of IDSR. Joint products have included updated technical guidelines for use in African countries that address surveillance for communicable and non-communicable diseases and incorporate the requirements of the IHR (2005), training materials, a set of indicators for monitoring implementation of IDSR, laboratory network guidelines, advocacy materials and assessment and evaluation processes.

Where We Work

  • World Health Organization African Region made up 46 member states

Since 1998, $15 million from USAID Africa Bureau has supported CDC’s technical collaboration with WHO-AFRO to implement the IDSR strategy by targeting surveillance systems strengthening to respond to communicable and non-communicable diseases that afflict African communities. AFRO and CDC developed a systematic implementation process for IDSR that began with a comprehensive assessment of each country’s national surveillance system. The IDSR assessment protocol helps teams to examine the current surveillance, laboratory confirmation, and epidemic preparedness and response activities at all levels of the country’s health system. The country’s Ministry of Health uses these assessment results to develop a plan and coordinate multiple resources to create a fully functional IDSR system by making changes at the central, provincial, district, and health facility levels of the health system.

Public Health Impact

Of the 46 countries in the African region:
  • 43 countries in Africa are implementing the IDSR strategy
  • 19 countries have completed their IHR self assessment
  • 30 countries report timely submission of district surveillance data to national level
  • 33 countries report investigated outbreaks with laboratory results

 
  • Page last reviewed: April 18, 2011 (archived document)
  • Content source: Global Health
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