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Vaccine. 2011 Dec 30;29 Suppl 4:D126-30. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2011.06.023. Epub 2011 Dec 19.

Strengthening surveillance: confronting infectious diseases in developing countries.

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Pan American Health Organization, 525 23rd Street, NW, Washington, DC 20037, USA.


Effective management and coordination in regions currently lacking surveillance capacity will require significant increases in existing human resources to manage vitally needed expanded national systems. An adequate investment in human resources is essential for ensuring surveillance functions well. This was the experience in the Americas. By taking this path, other benefits to the overall public health of nations will occur. Monitoring deaths will help as an indicator for impending epidemics or other threats. Better equipped labs will detect antigen shifts in virus and circulating bacterial serotypes more rapidly and other earlier changes in patterns of transmission more efficiently. Any strategy must promote and galvanize the commitment of countries to excellence, equity, and access, above all.

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