In collaboration with the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) provincial Health Department, the UKHSA delivered International Health Regulations Strengthening Project (IHR-SP) has successfully established real time surveillance of 43 priority infectious diseases, now including dengue fever. By implementing an Integrated Disease Surveillance & Response (IDSR) system for dengue fever, the aim is to strengthen routine surveillance, improve early detection, and prevention and control of the disease.
Dengue fever has been an endemic notifiable disease in the province since 2011-12, however, the previous dengue fever disease data flow in the KP province was paper based. The IHR-SP has strengthened disease surveillance by establishing disease data flow onto a digital platform – District Health Information System V2 (DHIS 2), enabling daily and weekly reporting within specified locations.
The dengue fever vector routine surveillance methodologies focus on larval surveys conducted by outdoor and indoor outreach inspection teams. A team of provincial and district medical entomologists supervise the inspection teams and offer technical assistance in identification of containers breeding dengue larvae and dengue larvae hotspot geographic areas.
To complement this work in the field, the IHR-SP in-country IT team developed the DHIS 2 vector surveillance dashboard and reporting tool and hosted in a DHIS 2 server at National Institute of Health (NIH). The new surveillance system aims to enable the Integrated Vector Management (IVM) program to collect quality data from the field and record it in a timely way. Analysis of the collected data will help to provide evidence to initiate any required response activities and evaluate the impact of preventive measures.
A one-day training workshop was subsequently arranged to build the capacity of staff involved with vector surveillance activities in the community. A total of 84 vector surveillance staff participated in the workshop and learned how to record, report and analyse vector surveillance data by using DHIS 2 system.
In the long term, the DHIS 2 vector surveillance data will be integrated with the already established National IDSR system for 43 priority infectious diseases, for an effective routine disease surveillance and event-based surveillance system.
Syed Wasif Javed / Kasif Ali