Ministry of Health | The National Network of Morbidity Observers has been activated
Defence Redefined
Published on 01/03/2023 at 11:00

The Ministry of Health announced the operation of the National Network of Morbidity Observers in Sentinel primary health care, with the aim of epidemiological monitoring of viruses of the respiratory system.

According to the announcement, the Unit for Epidemiological Monitoring and Control of Infectious Diseases in the context of the reorganization of the existing monitoring system is proceeding with a significant upgrade in the collection of epidemiological data through a digitized process.

The entire cost of the project is financed by the Recovery and Resilience Fund.

The primary goal of the network is the monitoring of viruses of the respiratory system (flu, SARS-CoV-2, RSV) so that it becomes possible to study the seasonality of these viruses and at the same time achieve the detection and early warning of possible epidemic outbreaks in our country.

In addition, the data will be used to take real-time public health measures as well as to formulate a medium-to-long-term public health strategy.

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Each year, a representative number of influenza-positive biological samples resulting from the Morbidity Monitoring Network are anonymously sent to the World Health Organization’s Influenza Reports for the production of next year’s influenza vaccine, which will include variants of the virus that prevailed in our country.

In the network, volunteering General Practitioners of adults and children from all regions of the country will participate as Doctors-Observers.

The latter will declare on a weekly basis the number of diagnoses of acute respiratory infection through the information system developed by the Unit for Epidemiological Monitoring and Control of Infectious Diseases in collaboration with the Center of Excellence for Research and Innovation “KOIOS” of the University of Cyprus.

Additionally, Doctors-Observers will refer a number of patients with relevant symptoms for free RT-PCR laboratory testing for influenza viruses, SARS-CoV-2, and RSV.

Sampling will be done at State Health Services Organization (OKYpY) hospitals and health centers and the laboratory tests will be carried out at the Laboratory of the General Hospital of Nicosia.

Finally, the Ministry thanks the General Practitioners for their willingness and cooperation to participate in the network.

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