Report focuses on sustainability of infectious disease surveillance

Just as the globalization of trade and travel is rapidly evolving, so is the globalization of infectious diseases and the need for cooperative approaches to detect, prevent and control them, according to Dr. David Dausey, chair of the Mercyhurst University Public Health Department.

The outbreaks of (SARS) and avian influenza in recent years showed how can significantly impact national economies and exposed the need for cooperation in detecting and controlling disease to protect populations and economies.

Such is the rationale behind a newly published paper in Global Health Governance by Dausey and eight co-authors from six different countries. The publication, "Sustainability of Sub-Regional Networks," describes the team's research in Southeast Asia to build and sustain sub-regional disease surveillance networks.

The purpose of a surveillance network is to measure the need for intervention, including early warning of emerging events and empower decision makers with timely and reliable information. While effective, surveillance networks face many challenges as they mature, from training to funding.

Using the Mekong Basin Disease Surveillance (MBDS) network as an example, Dausey and his colleagues developed a model to enhance its sustainability, which they hope can be used across the board as a guide in strengthening the sustainability of these networks.

The Mekong Basin area in Asia is considered a "hotspot" for "" (EIDs). More than a decade ago, six Mekong Basin countries organized themselves into a "sub-regional" network to cooperate in border health and for diseases of shared concern.

The paper acknowledges that sub-regional infectious disease surveillance networking is distinct from national, regional, or global surveillance and is an important trend in global public health because such cooperation is organized and governed by member countries and directly addresses their shared priorities. MBDS is one of the longest-standing current examples of self-organized sub-regional infectious disease surveillance networks in the world.

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

New research shows how H5N1 virus causes disease

Sep 28, 2007

H5N1 influenza, also known as avian influenza, is considered a major global threat to human health, with high fatality rates. While little had been known about the specific effects of H5N1 on organs and cells targeted by ...

Avian flu threat: New approach needed

Oct 23, 2008

As the first globally co-ordinated plan for the planet's gravest health threats is hatched by government ministers from around the world this weekend, a new report sets out a 10-point plan for this new, globalised approach ...

Recommended for you

Ebola aid dogged by coordination lags in Guinea

7 hours ago

Eight months into West Africa's Ebola outbreak, aid efforts in Guinea still suffer from poor coordination, hampering deployments of international support to help quell a virus that has killed more than 1,200 ...

User comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.