Contact Us

Department of Communicable Disease Surveillance & Control
Directorate General of Health Affairs Ministry of Health HQ, PO Box 393
PC 100, MUSCAT
Sultanate of Oman

Tel :     + (968) 24601921/ 24607524
Fax :    + (968) 24601832
Email : director@cdscoman.org 

Epidemiological Surveillance & Response

The word surveillance is the French word for "watching over". It’s an essential on-going activity for understanding the epidemiology of the communicable disease with the ultimate purpose for its control.Reliable surveillance data are required to be generated by the system for assessing the occurrenceof communicable diseases in the community as well as to implement control measure to reduce theirpublic health impact. A sensitive surveillance system can pick up rare events or diseases that have a potential to spread. Thus availability of timely, reliable and accurate information about the occurrence of disease is vital for its control. The information on the disease is gathered on the three fundamental epidemiological features that include-Time, Place, and Person distribution.

Objectives of surveillance…

  • Define health priorities on the basis of health data
  • Follow trends over time and re-define health priorities
  • Detect epidemics and implement an early response
  • Evaluate actions taken
Surveillance is a continuous and systematic process of…
  • Collection,compilation, collation and analysis of Data
  • Generate appropriate community actions and assess their impact
  • Feedback system
Communicable disease reporting is an essential component of public health surveillance. It serves many purposes. The strategies for surveillance may include active or passive, exhaustive or sentinel, electronic or manual, case-based or community-based etc. depending on disease epidemiology, priority/urgency of the situation and available resources including means of communication.
 
The epidemiological surveillance system in Oman was formally launched in March 1991. 
 
Notifiable diseases: Priority diseases are listed in groups A, B and C. The list is revised based on emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases. Syndromic surveillance is also encouraged. The system is established in all health care institutions of MoH, sister organizations and private sector. 
 
SOP manual: A standardized manual was published in Dec 1994. Updated 2nd edition was published in Jan 2005. A revised 3rd edition will be published in 2012/13. 
 
Other allied activities are supervision and monitoring, epidemiological investigation of outbreaks outbreak management training, preparedness and response plans and research activities etc.