The Typhoid Fever Surveillance in Africa Program (TSAP): Clinical, Diagnostic, and Epidemiological Methodologies


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Abstract

Background. New immunization programs are dependent on data from surveillance networks and disease burden estimates to prioritize target areas and risk groups. Data regarding invasive Salmonella disease in sub-Saharan Africa are currently limited, thus hindering the implementation of preventive measures. The Typhoid Fever Surveillance in Africa Program (TSAP) was established by the International Vaccine Institute to obtain comparable incidence data on typhoid fever and invasive nontyphoidal Salmonella (iNTS) disease in sub-Saharan Africa through standardized surveillance in multiple countries.Methods. Standardized procedures were developed and deployed across sites for study site selection, patient enrolment, laboratory procedures, quality control and quality assurance, assessment of healthcare utilization and incidence calculations.Results. Passive surveillance for bloodstream infections among febrile patients was initiated at thirteen sentinel sites in ten countries (Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Ghana, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Madagascar, Senegal, South Africa, Sudan, and Tanzania). Each TSAP site conducted case detection using these standardized methods to isolate and identify aerobic bacteria from the bloodstream of febrile patients. Healthcare utilization surveys were conducted to adjust population denominators in incidence calculations for differing healthcare utilization patterns and improve comparability of incidence rates across sites.Conclusions. By providing standardized data on the incidence of typhoid fever and iNTS disease in sub-Saharan Africa, TSAP will provide vital input for targeted typhoid fever prevention programs.

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