The goal of the magazine is to create a platform for timely information sharing, both within our region and globally, to improve surveillance and response activities. In 1918, towards the end of World War I, a pandemic flu swept the world. Importantly, APSED III builds on the foundations of the earlier versions to address emerging disease threats and public health emergencies (Fig. 1).
Indigenous peoples of Australia make up 3% of the country's population, yet continue to experience disproportionately higher rates of mortality and hospitalization for many infectious diseases.1 The 2009 influenza pandemic had a disproportionate impact on Indigenous peoples in Australia, 2 New Zealand,3 in the Americas and the Pacific.4 Real and tangible action involving Indigenous peoples in pandemic influenza planning and response is overdue. This paper will identify some of the strategies to include the perspectives of Australia's Indigenous Peoples (hereafter Aboriginal) in planning and responding to infectious disease emergencies. This work was carried out on behalf of the WHO Health Emergencies Program of the WHO Regional Office for the Western Pacific.
Prior to 2017, low pathogenic avian influenza (LPAI) was only detected in poultry in China and occasionally in humans. Notice of the General Office of the Ministry of Health on the Printing and Distribution of Technical Guidelines for the Prevention and Control of Human Avian Influenza Epidemics (Experiment)].
The Global Influenza Surveillance and Response System is responsible for monitoring influenza strains to detect new variants through a network of laboratories around the world.8 To ensure adequate production of influenza vaccines during a pandemic, multiple influenza vaccine manufacturers are needed so that supply meets demand, prices vaccines are competitive and manufacturers with established capacity and operational plans can switch from seasonal to pandemic influenza vaccine production as needed. Efforts to strengthen influenza vaccine supply centers in Asia-Pacific are underway, focusing on GAP grantee manufacturers in China, India, Thailand and Vietnam.9. At the same time, 150 courses of oseltamivir and 20,000 doses of the seasonal flu vaccine for adults were distributed to pregnant women and healthcare workers.
Influenza vaccine response during the onset of a pandemic: Report of the Second WHO Informal Consultation. Palache A, Abelin A, Hollingsworth R, Cracknell W, Jacobs C, Tsai T, et al.; IFPMA Influenza Vaccine Supply Task Force (IFPMA IVS). Seasonal Influenza Vaccine Dose Distribution Survey in 201 Countries The 2003 World Health Assembly Resolution on Seasonal Influenza Vaccination Coverage and the 2009 Influenza Pandemic have had little impact on improving influenza control and preparedness. pandemic.
Vietnam and Mongolia are also working to strengthen their influenza programs through several initiatives, including strengthening the National Immunization Technical Advisory Group and conducting Knowledge, Attitudes and Perceptions surveys to inform their influenza vaccine communication strategies . Vietnam trained and vaccinated approximately 11,000 health care workers in 2017, and Mongolia conducted a national study on AEFI of health care workers and pregnant women who received influenza vaccine.6 These efforts aim to build sustainable seasonal influenza programs from training of health care workers, developing communication materials, improving vaccine acceptability, establishing monitoring systems for AEFI, and evaluating influenza vaccine coverage and impact.
Epidemiological and virological characteristics of seasonal influenza in the Western Pacific Region of the World Health Organization, 2011–2015. This article discusses the lessons learned in risk communication during the response to recent outbreaks in the World Health Organization's Western Pacific Region. Risk communication is defined as "the real-time exchange of information, advice and opinions between experts, community leaders or officials and the people at risk".2 The outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) in China in 2002 particularly highlighted the importance of emphasizes open risk communication—a lesson reiterated during the 2015 outbreak of Middle East respiratory syndrome in the Republic of Korea.
Effective risk communication during a public health emergency can be difficult, especially in the early stages when many of the facts may be uncertain. Risk communication professionals should be recognized as social scientists who perform work that is as important to the success of emergency preparedness and response as the work of epidemiologists, laboratory experts, and other public health personnel. Risk Communication in Public Health Emergencies: A WHO Guide to Emergency Risk Communication (ERC) Policy and Practice.
While social media was used to listen to the public after the discovery of human cases of H7N9, the response to an outbreak of flu-associated severe acute respiratory infections (SARI) in Fiji in 2016 showed that more traditional means of communication still have a place in effective risk communication. Unfortunately, while much progress has been made in risk communication under APSED, other core public health capabilities for pandemic preparedness and response continue to be prioritized over risk communication.
These records became ILI cases and, along with the full consultations, were aggregated daily and made available to researchers via a secure website. All samples positive for influenza in Victoria, including those from VicSPIN, were sent to the WHO Collaborating Center for Influenza Reference and Research for antigenic characterization and antiviral susceptibility testing. Those that were successfully isolated were then analyzed by hemagglutination inhibition assay to determine antigenic similarity to current vaccine strains.5,6 Isolates were identified as antigenically similar to the reference strain if the test samples had titers less than an eightfold difference in compared to the homologous reference strain.
Isolates were also tested in a neuraminidase inhibition assay to determine susceptibility to the antiviral drugs oseltamivir, zanamivir, peramivir and laninamivir. The WHO method for ILI thresholds7 was used to assign three threshold levels: seasonal (4–15 ILI cases per 1000 consultations), average (15–24 ILI cases per 1000 consultations) and warning thresholds (>24 ILI cases) per 1000 consultations). Vaccination status was reported for 91% of the 725 patients deleted; of these, 35% were vaccinated with the proportion vaccinated increasing with age (Fig. 6).
The difference in the proportion of vaccinated influenza-positive and influenza-negative ILI cases was statistically significant (32% and 40%, respectively; P = 0.02). Of these, 38.6% were positive for influenza, 22.7% for other respiratory viruses and 38.6% negative for any respiratory virus.
The importance of school and social activities in the transmission of influenza A(H1N1)v: England, April - June 2009. Only three of the eight sites were included in the HAS due to resource limitations. For each site, we calculated the number of influenza-associated SARI hospitalizations by multiplying the age-specific influenza-positive percentages in each month by the corresponding SARI case number in the same month.
The total number of SARI cases associated with the national flu was calculated as the sum of all values in the column. From H5N1 to HxNy: An Epidemiological Review of Human Avian Influenza Infections in the Western Pacific, 2003–2017. Data on infections with these influenza virus subtypes in Western Pacific birds with the Western Pacific reporting more than one.
The most recently reported human A(H5N1) infection in the Western Pacific started in December 2015 and came from China. From November 2003 through September, human infections with six avian influenza viruses in the Western Pacific were reported to WHO. As of September 30, 2017, poultry infections with A(H7N9) virus have not been reported in the Western Pacific outside of China.
Since late 2003, high mortality associated with the A(H5N1) virus has been observed in poultry and wild birds in the Western Pacific. Timeline of human infections with avian influenza virus subtypes in the Western Pacific, May 1997-September 2017. Reported human infections with avian influenza viruses and bird events in the Western Pacific by month, November 2003-September 2017*.
Map of avian influenza virus detections reported in humans and birds in the Western Pacific region, November 2003–September 2017*. Demographic, geographic, and temporal characteristics of avian influenza virus subtypes reported in the Western Pacific region, November 2003–September 2017. Geographic distribution of reported cases of human infections with avian influenza A(H7N9) virus in the Western Pacific region, March 2013–September 2017*.
As of September 2017, no avian cases had been reported in the Western Pacific region since 2014. The overall age and gender distribution of human A(H5N1) infections in the Western Pacific region was similar to global averages7, but epidemiological patterns differed between countries. NICs in the Western Pacific region are located in: Australia (three laboratories), Cambodia, China, Fiji, Hong Kong (China), Japan, Lao People's Democratic Republic, Malaysia (two laboratories), Mongolia, New Caledonia (France), New Zealand (two laboratories), Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Republic of Korea, Singapore and Vietnam (two laboratories).
Preparation for molecular testing for Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus among laboratories in the World Health Organization Western Pacific Region.