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Global Disease Detection Program: Kazakhstan and Central Asia

To prevent Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever, herders in rural Kazakhstan work with Ministry of Health field staff to disinfect goats through a bath with an acaricide, a substance that kills ticks and mites.

To prevent Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever, herders in rural Kazakhstan work with Ministry of Health field staff to disinfect goats through a bath with an acaricide, a substance that kills ticks and mites.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has collaborated with ministries of health in Central Asia since 1995 to better recognize and respond to serious public health threats. In 2006, in coordination with country partners, CDC established a Global Disease Detection (GDD) Regional Center based in Kazakhstan to work across 5 countries: Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan.

The Center works with the ministries of health of the five republics to enhance local public health ability to contain and control infectious diseases, improve radiation safety, and counter the potential for bioterrorism. Assistance offered through the Center has helped contain outbreaks of typhoid, botulism, human influenza (including 2009 H1N1 influenza), and Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever.

The GDD Center in Kazakhstan helps contain outbreaks close to the source by building up local resources, drawing on combined expertise in:

  • Emerging infectious disease detection and response
  • Field epidemiology and laboratory training
  • Pandemic influenza preparedness and response
  • Zoonotic disease research and control
Posters warning of ticks and Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever are prominent in endemic areas of Kazakhstan.

Posters warning of ticks and Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever are prominent in endemic areas of Kazakhstan.

The Center is founded on strong regional partnerships and cooperation between U.S. and international agencies—all working to detect and respond to infectious disease threats. These partnerships have worked to improve laboratory systems, build surveillance systems for acute infectious respiratory illness, and strengthen health institutions through training in field epidemiology and outbreak response.

Making an Impact

From 2006-2016, the CDC’s Central Asia Regional Office has supported:

  • Effective response to over 114 outbreaks in three countries, including Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever, anthrax, measles, and typhoid fever
  • Detection of seven novel strains and pathogens new to the region
  • Establishment of 19 newly available in-country laboratory diagnostic tests
  • Graduation of over 87 future global health leaders as part of the two-year Field Epidemiology Training Program, 85% of whom hold influential positions in their government’s ministry of health
  • Training of over 5,757 public health officials from eight countries in short-term public health exercises, including epidemiology and laboratory, all hazards preparedness, and risk communication
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