Typhoid fever is a serious, systemic infection resulting in nearly 22 million cases and 216,500 deaths annually, primarily in Asia. Safe water, adequate sanitation, appropriate personal and food hygiene, and vaccination are the most effective strategies for prevention and control. In 2008, the World Health Organization (WHO) recommended use of available typhoid vaccines to control endemic disease and outbreaks and strengthening of typhoid surveillance to improve disease estimates and identify high-risk populations (e.g., persons without access to potable water and adequate sanitation). This report summarizes the status of typhoid surveillance and vaccination programs in the WHO South-East Asia (SEAR) and Western Pacific regions (WPR) during 2009-2013, after the revised WHO recommendations. Data were obtained from the WHO/United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) Joint Reporting Form on Immunization, a supplemental survey of surveillance and immunization program managers, and published literature. During 2009-2013, 23 (48%) of 48 countries and areas of SEAR (11) and WPR (37) collected surveillance or notifiable disease data on typhoid cases, with most surveillance activities established before 2008. Nine (19%) countries reported implementation of typhoid vaccination programs or recommended vaccine use during 2009-2013. Despite the high incidence, typhoid surveillance is weak in these two regions, and vaccination efforts have been limited. Further progress toward typhoid fever prevention and control in SEAR and WPR will require country commitment and international support for enhanced surveillance, targeted use of existing vaccines and availability of newer vaccines integrated within routine immunization programs, and integration of vaccination with safe water, sanitation, and hygiene measures.
Salmonella Typhi, first isolated in 1884, results in infection of the intestines and can end in death and disability. Due to serious adverse events post vaccination, whole cell killed vaccines have been replaced with new generation vaccines. The efficacy of Vi polysaccharide (ViPS) vaccine, a new generation, single-dose intramuscular typhoid vaccine was assessed in Nepal in 1987. However, despite the availability of ViPS vaccine for more than 25 years, Nepal has one of the highest incidence of typhoid fever. Therefore we collected information from hospitals in the Kathmandu Valley from over the past five years. There were 9901 enteric fever cases between January 2008 and July 2012. 1,881 of these were confirmed typhoid cases from five hospitals in the Kathmandu district. Approximately 70% of the cases involved children under 15 years old. 1281 cases were confirmed as S. Paratyphi. Vaccines should be prioritized for control of typhoid in conjunction with improved water and sanitation conditions in Nepal and in endemic countries of Asia and Africa.
Enteric fever caused by Salmonella enterica serovar Typhi and Salmonella enterica serovar Paratyphi is still a major disease burden mainly in developing countries. Previously, S. Typhi was believed to be the major cause of enteric fever. The real situation is now becoming clear with reports emerging from many Asian countries of S. Paratyphi, mostly S. Paratyphi A, causing a substantial number of cases of enteric fever. Although there have been advances in the use of the currently available typhoid vaccines and in the development of newer typhoid vaccines, paratyphoid vaccine development is lagging behind. Since the disease caused by S. Typhi and S. Paratyphi are clinically indistinguishable and are commonly termed enteric fever, it will be necessary to have a vaccine available against both S. Typhi and S. Paratyphi A as a bivalent enteric fever vaccine.
The authors conducted formative research (a) to identify stakeholders concerns related to typhoid fever and the need for disease information and (b) to develop a communication strategy to inform stakeholders and address their concerns and motivate for support of a school-based vaccination program in Pakistan. Data were collected during interactive and semi-structured focus group discussions and interviews, followed by a qualitative analysis and multidisciplinary consultative process to identify an effective social mobilization strategy comprised of relevant media channels and messages. The authors conducted 14 focus group discussions with the parents of school-aged children and their teachers, and 13 individual interviews with school, religious, and political leaders. Parents thought that typhoid fever was a dangerous disease, but were unsure of their childrens risk. They were interested in vaccination and were comfortable with a school-based vaccination if conducted under the supervision of trained and qualified staff. Teachers and leaders needed information on typhoid fever, the vaccine, procedures, and sponsors of the vaccination program. Meetings were considered the best form of information dissemination, followed by printed materials and mass media. This study shows how qualitative research findings can be translated into an effective social mobilization and communication approach. The findings of the research indicated the importance of increasing awareness of typhoid fever and the benefits of vaccination against the disease. Identification and dissemination of relevant, community-based disease and vaccination information will increase demand and use of vaccination.
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