Health experts boost knowledge on disease surveillance and response


Health officials such as nurses, doctors, laboratory technicians, statisticians and public health officers are all due to be trained in the Seychelles Integrated Disease Surveillance and Response (ISDR).

They will then be proficient in disease surveillance and data collection and interpretation of information, among other skills.

The launch of the first training of this kind was held on Monday morning at the Berjaya Beau Vallon Bay hotel, and is a collaboration of the Ministry of Health, World Health
Organisation, and the Indian Ocean Commission.

Minister Larue addressing delegates at the launch of the training session on Monday

Monday’s session, which was for doctors, nurses and nurse managers, was officially launched by the Minister for Health, Mitcy Larue.

“Over the years, we have seen that Seychelles has not been spared by epidemics or pandemics, such as Chikungunya in 2007 and AH1N1 in 2009 to mention a few,” she said.

“We should always be vigilant to detect any possible communicable diseases, threats and swiftly respond in order to minimise the impact of such calamities through effective disease surveillance activities.”

She added that recently, polio has been declared a global emergency after an explosive outbreak in countries previously free of the disease.

“Our geographical isolation and smallness do not mean that we are safe from these threats,” she said.

“These IDSR training will equip you with all the know-how to identify and diagnose priority disease, report in a timely manner, perform outbreak investigations, come up with effective actions and recommendations in order to safeguard the public health of our nation.”

Dr Jastin Bibi appealed to the public not to hesitate to report any suspicious or odd illnesses in districts and communities to the Ministry of Health, which could possibly develop into an epidemic. This includes people suffering from symptoms and allergies, especially if it is being spread.

“We will do the appropriate investigation to differentiate harmless illnesses from potentially serious threats, take appropriate actions, and if need be forward investigations to other departments, such as the department of environment,” he said.

The ministry aims to have all relevant staff trained in the adapted Seychelles ISDR guidelines by mid-June this year.