ACUTE FLACCID PARALYSIS SURVEILLANCE SYSTEM: CURRENT STATUS IN AZAD JAMMU & KASHMIR- 2018
Background: The State of Azad Jammu & Kashmir (AJ&K) is polio free since October 2000.The objectives of our study is to review of existing Acute Flaccid Paralysis Surveillance System in Azad Jammu &Kashmir, identify the strong & weak points of the existing system and suggest course of action for efficient performance of the existing system.
Methods: This qualitative & quantitative evaluation was conducted at Provincial Disease Surveillance &Response Unit (PDSRU) Muzaffarabad Azad Jammu & Kashmir during March -April 2019. The database of AFP cases during 2018 was reviewed and relevant stakeholder's interviews were conducted consulting guidelines formulated by the Centre for Disease Control & prevention(CDC) in 2001 for Evaluating Public Health Surveillance Systems.
Results: In 2018, a total of 265 AFP cases were registered. The mean age was 65 months (range 01 - 180 months). 59 % (n=157) were male children. 58% of cases were under 05 year's age. Standardized case definition and data format with simple information flow was found. System was flexible enough to incorporate measles and neonatal tetanus cases since 2009. Data quality was excellent (100% zero and monthly reports). A close coordination was observed amongst all relevant stakeholders. Sensitivity was 200%. No polio case was identified and therefore, PPV was zero. Majority of cases were reported by public sector (93%).Sufficient financial as well as skilled human resources were available and hence system found stable. Timeliness of reporting found 90%.
Conclusion: The performance of AFP surveillance system in AJ&K is up to the mark. However, there is constant threat of reintroduction of polio virus from adjacent area of Punjab & Khyber Pakhtunkhwa provinces. Highly vigilant AFP surveillance system with capacity of rapid response is the solution. Furthermore, it is vital to sustain the AFP Surveillance till the goal of global polio eradication is achieved.
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