South East Asia Region

SAFETYNET: South East Asia Field Epidemiology and Technology Network

Established 2009

Activities From the Field - Southeast Asian Region
by Dr. Mohan D. Gupte

There are two member programs in TEPHINET’s south-east Asian region: Thailand’s FETP which began in 1980 and India’s which began in 2001. Approximately 15 trainees are expected to graduate from these two FETPs in 2005.
 
Program trainees have served on teams that have responded to outbreaks, where the interventions have thwarted epidemics. Improvements in policies and practices are adopted as a direct result of recommendations following these interventions, to prevent recurrence. Recent examples include recommendations which were made as a result of the following investigations:
  • Trainees of Thailand’s International Field Epidemiology Training Program
    • Responded to Avian Influenza outbreaks in humans in Thailand (2004)
    • Conducted a study of household resources for acute diarrhea in young children in Thailand (2002-2003)
    • Investigated an outbreak of scabies among health care workers caused by Norwegian scabies in Thai hospital (2003)
    • Investigated a cluster of cases of gastroenteritis associated with drinking milk supplements, in Thailand (2003)
    • Responded to an outbreak of viral hepatitis A among health care workers in a tertiary care hospital in Bangkok Thailand (2004)
    • Conducted a survey of the national EPI vaccine coverage and validity among Thai children 0-6 years (2003)
  • Trainees of India’s National Institute of Epidemiology, Master of Applied Epidemiology Training program
    • Carried out a study of the effectiveness of measures taken to avoid bony deformities due to fluorosis in a village of Madhya Pradesh, Central India (2003)
    • Conducted an investigation of outbreaks of cholera Central Tamil Nadu (2002)
    • Did an evaluation of the coverage of measles immunization in India, by the lot quality assurance sampling method (2003)
    • Carried out a study of the prevalence, awareness, treatment status knowledge and practices of hypertension among adults aged 30 years and above, in urban Aizawl, Mizoram, India (2003)
Research and investigations conducted by FETP trainees contribute to the general understanding of the epidemiology of certain diseases and conditions, methods of combating epidemics and so forth. Recent examples include knowledge gained from the following studies and investigations:
  • Trainees of Thailand’s International Field Epidemiology Training Program
    • Performed a study of the epidemiology of AIDS-defining cancers in Thailand, 1989-2003
    • Carried out a study of the incidence of intussusception among children under five years of age during 1998-2002 in Thailand
    • Undertook a study of the morbidity and mortality of jelly-fish envenomation in four seaside districts, in southern Thailand 1998-2002
    • Investigated an influenza outbreak in a school in Mae Hong Son Province, Thailand (2003)
    • Did an investigation of an outbreak of ventilator-associated pneumonia in a hospital in Thailand, (2003)
    • Performed a study of road traffic safety morbidity, Vientiane, Lao PDR, 1994-2003
  • Trainees of India’s National Institute of Epidemiology, Master of Applied Epidemiology Training program
    • Did an investigation of an outbreak of cholera in a community Parbatia, Dhenkanal, Orissa, India (2003)
    • Carried out a study of the factors associated with default among new sputum positive pulmonary TB patients treated in revised national TB control program – DOTS strategy, Tiruvallur district, India (2003)
    • Undertook a study of the epidemiology of unintentional injury in a rural community, Tamil Nadu (2003)
    • Performed an outbreak investigation of unknown fever with rash in a remote village (Lugar) in Naintal District, Uttaranchal, India (2004)
    • Identified the factors affecting utilization of childhood immunization services in Khurda District, Orissa India (2003)
    • Evaluated a national anti-malaria program, Aizawi district, Mizoram 2003 (India)
    • Did a comparative study of anemia in urban and rural school girls aged 12 – 16 years in Shimla, India (undated)
Program trainees have contributed a great deal to the improvement of surveillance systems within their countries. Recent examples include improvements resulting from the following studies and investigations:
  • Trainees of Thailand’s International Field Epidemiology Training Program
    • Undertook a study comparing the antenatal HIV prevalence determined from annual sentinel surveillance with that determined from the records of the national program for prevention of mother to child transmission of HIV, Thailand (2001-02)
    • Performed an evaluation of AIDS & symptomatic HIV Surveillance in Sukhothai province, Thailand (2003)
    • evaluated a surveillance system for growth monitoring and promotion (GMP) in Thailand (2002)
  • In 2003, trainees of India’s National Institute of Epidemiology, Master of Applied Epidemiology Training program conducted an evaluation of a rural malaria surveillance system in Saidapet health Unit District, Tamilnadu (2003)
Dr. Mohan D. Gupte
 

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