Pacific Islands surveillance

Pacific Islands surveillance

Emerging disease surveillance and response in the Pacific

The WHO emergency surveillance and response (ESR) programme assists countries with strengthening infectious disease surveillance and response systems. This includes providing technical advice, training, and supplies and equipment. A key ESR activity is the management and coordination of the weekly Pacific Syndromic Surveillance System (PSSS) that provides early warning alerts for potential disease outbreaks. PSSS collects, collates and reports surveillance data from 23 Pacific island countries. A main priority is strengthening local outbreak response capacity, closely linked to PSSS alerts.

Pacific syndromic surveillance reports

The Pacific Syndromic Surveillance System (PSSS) reports information that could indicate the start of an outbreak-prone disease. Data are collected on four syndromes: acute fever and rash, diarrhoea, influenza-like-illness, and prolonged fever. PSSS serves as an invaluable early warning tool for common outbreak-prone diseases and a mechanism for regular contact between Pacific island countries, WHO and other international agencies such as the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC).

The Pacific Public Health Surveillance Network (PPHSN)

The Pacific Public Health Surveillance Network (PPHSN) is a voluntary network of countries, areas and organizations. Created jointly by WHO and the Secretariat of Pacific Communities (SPC) in 1996, PPHSN is dedicated to the promotion of public health and improving public health surveillance and response to health emergencies in the Pacific. Its main priority is communicable diseases, especially ones prone to outbreak. Target diseases include: dengue, measles, rubella, influenza, leptospirosis, typhoid fever, cholera, SARS and HIV/STIs.

 In order to achieve its goals, PPHSN harmonizes the health data needs of Pacific countries, develops adequate surveillance systems and computer applications, adapts public health surveillance training programmes to local and regional needs, and promotes opening the network to new partners, new services and other networks.


Supporting the International Health Regulations

WHO provides Pacific island countries with support to implement the International Health Regulations 2005. Specifically, WHO created the Asia Pacific Strategy for Emerging Diseases and Public Health Emergencies as a roadmap to assist Pacific island countries in meeting IHR obligations by strengthening public health emergency surveillance, response and communication capacities. 

Asia Pacific Strategy for Emerging Diseases and Public health Emergencies

Advancing implementation of the International Health Regulations (2005) : working together towards health security

Our work

Pacific Technical Support