Heath system analysis to support capacity development to respond to pandemic influenza in Asia.
Influenza subtype H5N1 is endemic in poultry in SE Asia, and more than 200 human cases have occurred, more than half in SE Asia, of which a substantial proportion have died. The spread of H5N1 in the region has resulted in considerable public health and political concern. In part this stems from recognition that, should H5N1 undergo re-assortment or mutation, a human pandemic is likely and this is bound to have very substantial global economic and public health consequences. Many experts anticipate that SE Asia is likely to be the epicentre of the next pandemic of influenza. Many countries have made considerable progress in the past two years in strategic planning. Substantial resources have been committed to the development and/or further strengthening of animal and human disease surveillance and response systems for early detection and prompt containment of avian influenza and other emerging zoonotic diseases. However, in SE Asia whilst considerable progress has been made and substantial domestic and international efforts are being focused, public health system capacity to respond to pandemic influenza remains a profound challenge.[+] Read More
The goal of this research project is to provide a strategic framework to evaluate operational capacity and, in 4 countries at risk of being at the epicentre of a future influenza pandemic (Vietnam, Indonesia, Thailand, Taiwan), determine systematically operational capacity gaps in order support containment and mitigate the consequences of pandemic influenza in these countries and elsewhere. This project will evaluate two linked elements:
Operational capacity to contain and mitigate against pandemic influenza will be evaluated. Resources will be mapped according to WHO's identified critically important themes. Governance arrangements to enable resource use will be analysed through rapid situational analyses, review of simulation exercises and past outbreaks including SARS and human cases of avian influenza, and stakeholder analyses. Operational capacity will be evaluated for 4 pandemic influenza scenarios with outcomes being containment or mitigation.
The research will result in: