233310 Internally Displaced Persons Surveillance System, Haiti post quake, 2010: Implementation and preliminary results

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Charbel El Bcheraoui, PhD , Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA
Jenny Walldorf, MD , Global AIDS Program, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA
Armand Sprecher , Infectious Disease Epidemiology Section, CDC, Atlanta, GA
Rania Tohme , Division of Viral Hepatitis, CDC, Atlanta, GA
Matthew Willis , Division Of Tuberculosis Elimination, CDC, Atlanta, GA
Emily Jentes , Division Of Global Migration And Quarantine, CDC, Atlanta, GA
Roc Magloire , National Lab of Public Health, Ministry of Public Health and Population, Port-au-Prince, Haiti
Kam Kyan Mung , Haiti, PAHO, Port-au-Prince, Haiti
Susan Temporado Cookson , Temporado Cookson, CDC, Atlanta, GA
Background: The January 12, 2010, a 7.0 magnitude earthquake in Haiti displaced 2,000,000 people and created high risk for communicable disease due to overcrowded, unsanitary living conditions. Hundreds of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) established temporary clinics for the internally displaced persons (IDP). Given the need to detect potential outbreaks in IDP settlements, the Haitian Ministry of Public Health and Population (MSPP), Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO), and CDC implemented the Internally Displaced Persons Surveillance System (IDPSS), monitoring 19 conditions of outbreak potential in settlement clinics. Methods: MSPP, PAHO, and CDC engaged NGOs serving large settlements and providing long-term health services. The agencies worked to establish rapport with survivors, followed trends of reportable diagnoses among clinic visits, undertook epidemiologic investigations of disease clusters, and established an internet-based Google communication forum.

Results: As of April 24th, 33 sites on average reported weekly. Of 96,472 clinic visits, 23,183 (24.0%) were cases of reportable conditions; 9186 (39.6%) were among children <5 years of age. Of all clinic visits, the most common reportable conditions were acute respiratory infections (9.2%), suspected malaria (5.1%), and watery diarrhea (4.7%).

Conclusions: Implementing post-disaster emergency surveillance is possible even with a dynamic population served by multiple NGO partners, by focusing on diseases of greatest outbreak potential, providing timely feedback, and developing internet-based communication techniques. Survivors typically go through a stage of anger, which can hamper relief efforts if trust and credibility are not established. Frequent reports bolster trust, strengthen the credibility of disaster managers, and minimize resources spent following up rumors.

Learning Objectives:
The learner will assess the importance of surveillance of diseases of outbreak potentials even if past experiences showed that no outbreaks occur following natural disasters. The learner will also identify an innovative interagency communication strategy to improve support of and feedback to NGOs, which is particularly important during disaster response.

Keywords: Surveillance, Disasters

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am qualified to present because I was part of the CDC Haiti post-quake response and implemented the surveillance system I'm presenting in Port-au-Prince, Haiti.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.

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