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Korean Journal of Epidemiology 2006;28(1): 69-74.
Implementation of Effective Policies on Emerging and Reemerging Infectious Diseases.
Duk hyoung Lee
Korea Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Ministry ofHealth and Welfare, Korea. leeduk0125@hanmail.net
Abstract
The history of emerging infectious diseases was recently reawakened with the SARS outbreak in 2003 that resulted in 8,098 cases and 774 deaths in 26 countries. Korea dealt with 20 suspect or probable cases. From this experience of managing SARS, the public health system has been reinforced and the system's flexibility improved. The Korea Centers for Diseases Control and Prevention (KCDC) was inaugurated in January 2004 as a technically advanced and leading national organization. Thanks to SARS, multiple related Ministries and Agencies realized the need for their involvement in the case of global and national public health threat. The joint WHO/OIE/FAO consultation that was held in May 2004 in Geneva agreed that the next candidateemerging infectious disease that would affect global public health as seriously as SARS would almost certainly originate from animal infection (zoonosis) and that the most probable disease would be avian influenza. Thanks to the pandemic influenza issue, global cooperation and national preparedness for avian and pandemic influenza has been enhanced and this will provide a template for global cooperation to address all types of public health emergencies. The main strategies to develop the preparedness against the public health threat of emerging infectious diseases are firstly maintaining basic public health scheme with capacity building, and secondly establishing disease-specific supplement. As to pandemic influenza, the government is building core capacities in its organizational and functional operation, including stockpiling of antiviral (oseltamivir) and personal protective equipment. In the plan of action on public health emergency, the additional issues to be dealt with include the development of public risk communication scenarios, measures to increase social distance, disinfection measures, especially hand washing, table top exercises, and manpower mobilization. International and regional contribution and collaboration have now become prerequisites for every country. We work to ensure transparency in reporting, immediate sharing of epidemiological data and samples, capacity building and collaboration with in-country and international partners.
Keywords: Policy; Preparedness; Emerging and Reemerging Infectious Disease


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