Epidemiology and Surveillance Training – Pakistan

RELEVANCE

  • Surveillance plans for zoonotic and high consequence disease are a necessary component of disease control and/or eradication strategies.
  • In Pakistan, such surveillance plans for diseases of import are either incomplete or nonexistent. Pakistan recognizes the need for formalized training of epidemiologists and laboratory personnel on the topics of animal disease surveillance so that high-quality surveillance plans and disease control strategies can be developed and implemented.

RESPONSE

  • IIAD, in partnership with the U.S. Department of State (DoS) and CRDF Global, conducted a training program with 13 field veterinary medical officers, epidemiologists, academicians, and diagnosticians from diagnostic laboratories across Pakistan during August of 2016.
  • The customized 2-week training program was delivered via face to face workshops.
  • The objectives of the training program were:
    • To strengthen participant knowledge and skills in the following areas: surveillance standards and guidelines, sampling methods, analyzing surveillance data, and morbidity measures and basic statistics in epidemiology.
    • To build capacity for trainees to develop and implement surveillance plans and disease control strategies.

IMPACT

  • The workshop increased participant knowledge of laboratory management. Trainees demonstrated a 41.1% increase in knowledge of key epidemiology topics at 6-month follow-up versus the course pre-test.
  • Participants are implementing their knowledge and skills to improve workplace operations. 7% of participants indicated that they use information from the workshop frequently or every day. In addition, all trainees surveyed indicated that their participation in the workshop led to improvements in workplace operations.
  • Participants are developing and implementing surveillance plans and disease control strategies. 3 trainees have implemented surveillance plans and 4 trainees have developed disease control strategies.
  • The training has contributed to increased disease awareness and laboratory capacity in Pakistan.3% of trainees indicated that disease awareness in Pakistan has increased, while 66.7% of the trainees indicated that the workshop has improved capabilities and capacities in national and provincial laboratories.