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Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) ……. WHO issues new guidance on surveillance strategies & contact tracing

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Releases a new development on contact tracing Requests National authorities should consider including COVID-19 as a mandatory notifiable disease with requirements for immediate reporting. New measures require a combination of surveillance systems including contact tracing in the entire health care system, at the community level, as well as in closed residential settings and for vulnerable groups. New regulation aims at ensuring that surveillance for COVID-19 limits the spread of disease, enable public health authorities to manage the risk of COVID-19, and thereby enable economic and social activity to resume to the extent possible Communication about contact tracing should emphasize solidarity, reciprocity, and the common good.   Summary on new guidance on Surveillance strategies for COVID-19 human infection: One of the kernels of the Report is an advice to National authorities should consider including COVID-19 as a mandatory notifiable disease with requirements for immediate reporting. Surveillance systems should be geographically comprehensive and include all persons and communities at risk. Surveillance for vulnerable or high-risk populations should be enhanced. This will require a combination of surveillance systems including contact tracing in the entire health care system, at the community level, as well as in closed residential settings and for vulnerable groups. The document provides an overview of surveillance strategies that Member States should consider as part of comprehensive national surveillance for COVID-19. It also emphasise the need to adapt and reinforce existing national systems where appropriate and to scale-up surveillance capacities as needed. WHO has published new guidance on Contact tracing in the context of COVID-19. When systematically applied, the guidance will help break the chains of transmission of COVID-19 and other infectious disease and is thus an essential public health tool for controlling infectious disease outbreaks. In today’s ‘Subject in Focus’, WHO provides an update on the work of the Emergency Medical Teams, the Global Outbreak Alert and Response Network, and Risk Communication and Community Engagement. Background COVID-19 has spread rapidly around the world, affecting every community directly or indirectly. Stringent public health and social measures (PHSM) have been put in place by all countries to slow the spread of COVID-19. These include limitations on domestic and international travel; stay-at-home orders; closing of schools, shops, and religious centers; among other measures. As public health authorities consider the lifting some of these measures, it is critical that robust surveillance is in place or put in place to control the spread of COVID-19…

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