Conference abstract

Can the frontline field epidemiology training program strengthen surveillance in reference hospitals? The case of N’Gaoundere Regional Hospital, Cameroon 2017

Pan African Medical Journal - Conference Proceedings. 2017:3(25).16 Dec 2017.
doi: 10.11604/pamj-cp.2017.3.25.124

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Keywords: Surveillance, timeliness, completeness, field epidemiology, referential hospital
Oral presentation

Can the frontline field epidemiology training program strengthen surveillance in reference hospitals? The case of N’Gaoundere Regional Hospital, Cameroon 2017

Moïse Prosper Bebe1, Ateba Athanase2, Bibiane Kameni2, Fadimatou Altine Fadimatou2, Rose-Carole Bohimbo2,3, Etoundi Mbella2

1Cameroon Frontline Field Epidemiology Training Program, Yaounde, Cameroon, 2Ministry of Public Health, Cameroon, 3Cameroon Field Epidemiology Training Program, Cameroon

&Corresponding author
Rose-Carole Bohimbo, Cameroon Field Epidemiology Training Program, Yaounde, Cameroon

Abstract

Introduction: disease surveillance in health facilities is one of the priorities of the Ministry of Public Health in Cameroon. However, its implementation is limited in reference hospitals. Seven staff members involved in disease surveillance at N'Gaoundere Regional Hospital (NRH) were trained in Frontline Field Epidemiology Training Program (FFETP) in 2 cohorts from November 2016 to July 2017. At their return, they conducted briefing sessions for their colleagues. This study was conducted to assess the influence of FFETP on the quality of epidemiological surveillance at NRH.

Methods: comparative analysis was done on NRH data recorded during the period of January to July in 2016 and 2017. Variables of interest were completeness and timeliness of Epidemics Prone Disease (EPD) weekly reports of each hospital service, compliance with “zero case” reporting and data archiving. Results were analyzed with Microsoft Excel 2013.

Results: of the 17 staff members interviewed, 11 (64%) complied in 2017 with the notification requirements such as correct filling in of patient register and notifying cases as against 4 (23%) in 2016. Completeness of the reports increased from 33% (90/270) to 78% (210/270) and timeliness increased from 19% (n = 50/270) to 48% (n = 120/270). Each week, 20 (71%) of 28 EPD under surveillance in Cameroon were reported in 2017 against 4/28 (15%) in 2016. “Zero case” reporting was respected in 2017 while it was not recorded in 2016. Seven out of nine services (77%) were involved in the weekly and monthly epidemiologic data review in 2017 compared with 3 (33%) in 2016.

Conclusion: frontline Field Epidemiology Training Program improved surveillance system of EPD and other public health events in NRH. Expansion of FETP to all the referential hospitals is necessary in order to strengthen disease notification, data quality in surveillance, early disease detection and proper response.