CDC collaborates with the Government of India, Indian institutions, and international organizations to address a wide range of infectious and non-communicable diseases. Together we work to strengthen India’s health system to reach national and international goals. CDC opened the first India office in 2001 to support the Life Initiative for HIV/AIDS prevention and control. Today CDC maintains offices in New Delhi and Hyderabad with staff supporting initiatives of the Division of Global Health Protection, the Global Immunization Division, the Division of Global HIV and Tuberculosis, and the Influenza Program.
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CDC office (physical presence)
11 U.S. Assignees
27 Locally Employed
India at a Glance
Per capita income: $5,760
Life expectancy at birth women/men: 69/68 yrs
Infant mortality rate: 42/1,000 live births
Source: Population Reference Bureau 2014: India
Top 10 Causes of Death
Source: WHO World Health Statistics 2012
- Ischemic heart disease 12 %
- Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease 11%
- Stroke 9%
- Diarrheal disease 6%
- Lower respiratory infections 5%
- Preterm birth complications 4%
- Tuberculosis 3%
- Self-inflicted injuries 3%
- Falls 3%
- Road injuries 2%
Impact in India
- Reduced polio from 1,934 cases in 1998 to 1 case in 2011. India is now certified polio-free.
- 65 HIV reference laboratories accredited under the CDC-NACO Lab Systems Strengthening collaboration between 2009-2015.
- Identified monsoon seasonality of influenza virus, leading to revision of recommendation to vaccinate during pre-monsoon period (April-May).
- Discovered the cause of a previously unexplained neurologic illness affecting children in Bihar.
In support of India’s National AIDS Control Organization, CDC has focused its efforts on preventing new infections, increasing access to services for people living with HIV and tuberculosis (TB), and establishing a single monitoring and evaluation system. CDC provides technical assistance on a broad range of issues, including prevention of parent to child transmission of HIV, the prevention and treatment needs of people who inject drugs, care and treatment of key affected populations, addressing the comorbidities of TB and HIV, strengthening laboratory systems, and improving district-level capacity to address HIV and TB.
CDC has provided technical assistance for TB control efforts since 1997. Nationwide Coverage of Directly Observed Therapy (a leading TB control strategy) was achieved in 2006. Since 2007, CDC has provided guidance on expanding TB/HIV and TB infection control, worked through the Global Health Security Agenda to provide technical assistance to projects aimed at the control and prevention of MDR-TB, and supported TB program strengthening, operational research and surveillance.
Since 1993, CDC has assigned experts to WHO regional and country offices in India to support surveillance of vaccine-preventable diseases. CDC’s technical support and leadership has been instrumental in developing and implementing polio eradication strategies, maternal and neonatal tetanus elimination strategies, strengthening the national immunization program, and supporting accelerated control of measles and rubella. In 2014 India was certified polio-free.
Global Disease Detection (GDD)
With the Global Health Security Agenda as a central focus, the India GDD Regional Center works to build capacity within local and regional public health entities to rapidly detect, accurately identify, and promptly contain emerging infectious disease threats. GDD projects include strengthening surveillance networks and public health laboratory systems, providing technical assistance to improve outbreak response, and bridging the human-animal interface to detect emerging zoonotic disease threats.
India Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS)
In 2012, the India GDD Regional Center and India’s National Centre for Disease Control established the India Epidemic Intelligence Service Programme (IEIS) – a post graduate field training program modeled after the US EIS. CDC supports the India EIS through technical assistance and a resident advisor. The majority of EIS graduates return to positions in district, state and national level programs where they lead surveillance and outbreak response efforts.
CDC’s Influenza Division has supported capacity-building for influenza surveillance in India since 2004, leading to improved characterization of circulating influenza viruses and rapid detection of novel viruses. CDC-supported laboratory training and preparedness workshops have strengthened India’s response measures against seasonal, avian, and pandemic influenza. CDC also collaborates with Indian partner organizations to research the influenza burden in India, evaluate the effectiveness of influenza vaccines, and identify optimal timing for influenza vaccination, all of which help inform national influenza vaccination policy. CDC also has an assigned influenza staff at the WHO regional office.
CDC provides expertise and consultation on a number of critical non-communicable disease issues in India, including chemical and radiological contaminants, emergency preparedness, burn surveillance, and household air pollution. CDC also provides expertise and support to help India consistently implement the four surveys of the Global Tobacco Surveillance System, managed by CDC and WHO.
Global Health Security Agenda
CDC is working with India to improve their ability to prevent, detect and respond to infectious disease threats. This work helps meet the U.S. commitment to assist at least 31 countries in reaching the targets outlined in the Global Health Security Agenda. CDC’s extensive global health presence and experience are critical to achieving these targets.
Resources and Links
Yellow Fever and Malaria Information
- Updates on CDC's Polio Eradication Efforts
- Video: Global Immunization: Polio in India
- Publice Health Grand Rounds Presentation: Polio Eradication in India
Health Systems Strengthening
Download the India Country Office Annual Report 2014–2015
CDC works 24/7 to protect the American people from disease, including those that begin overseas. CDC has dedicated and caring experts in over 50 countries. They detect and control outbreaks at their source, saving lives and reducing healthcare costs. In India, CDC is helping to develop a strong public health system.
- Page last reviewed: May 20, 2016
- Page last updated: May 20, 2016
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