The First Shanghai Forum on Surveillance Response System Leading to Tropical Diseases Elimination

Shanghai, P.R. China, 16-17 June, 2012

I. Background

Effective and timely public health responses reflect the ability of a health system to provide reliable and timely information for public health action. The tropical diseases are a group of infectious diseases which primarily affect the poorest sectors of a society in tropical and subtropical areas; especially the rural population and the most disadvantaged urban populations in the developing countries. In addition, more than one billion people in the world suffer from Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs), that are also characterized by little attention from policy-makers, lack of priority within health strategies, inadequate research, limited resource allocation and few interventions. The global smallpox and polio eradication programs provide examples of the critical role that surveillance plays in linking surveillance data to targeted, effective public health responses. Thus, the establishment of surveillance-response-system (SRS) is critical for tropical diseases elimination. This forum, in collaboration with the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH)) and the World Health Organization (WHO)  brings together scientists in research, public health and health policy to explore and discuss the surveillance response systems for the elimination of tropical diseases with focus but not limited to malaria, schistosomiasis, filariasis and other NTDs.

II.Overall objective

The purpose of this forum is to share their knowledge and experience on diseases control and prevention, and to discuss novel approaches towards the establishment of integrated surveillance-response systems that will assist in disease elimination efforts.

III. Specific objectives

1.  Overview the current endemicity of tropical diseases, the current national and international strategies towards elimination
2.  Comparatively assess prevailing strategies and novel approaches required to achieve elimination.
3.  Discuss on how more effective and novel surveillance- response-systems can be established in tailored to the various disease endemic areas

VI. Expected outcome

1.  Critically assess the potential for disease elimination focusing on PR China and its diseases priorities
2.  Establish a research and validation agenda for novel tools for diseases elimination focusing on surveillance-response systems/approaches.