Response to the challenges of pandemic H1N1 in a small island state: the Barbadian experience

Sobers-Grannum, Natasha; Springer, Karen; Ferdinand, Elizabeth; John, Joy S. t.
January 2010
BMC Public Health;Jan2010 Supplement 1, Vol. 10, p1
Academic Journal
Background Having been overwhelmed by the complexity of the response needed for the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) epidemic, public health professionals in the small island state of Barbados put various measures in place to improve its response in the event of a pandemic. Methods Data for this study was collected using Barbados' National Influenza Surveillance System, which was revitalized in 2007. It is comprised of ten sentinel sites which send weekly notifications of acute respiratory illness (ARI) and severe acute respiratory illness (SARI) to the Office of the National Epidemiologist. During the 2009 H1N1 pandemic, meetings of the National Pandemic Planning Committee and the Technical Command Committee were convened. The pharmaceutical and non-pharmaceutical interventions (NPIs) implemented as a result of these meetings form the basis of the results presented in this paper. Results On June 3, 2009, Barbados reported its first case of 2009 H1N1. From June until October 2009, there were 155 laboratory confirmed cases of 2009 H1N1, with one additional case occurring in January 2010. For the outbreak period (June-October 2009), the surveillance team received reports of 2,483 ARI cases, compared to 412 cases for the same period in 2008. The total hospitalization rate due to SARIs for the year 2009 was 90.1 per 100,000 people, as compared to 7.3 per 100,000 people for 2008. Barbados' pandemic response was characterized by a strong surveillance system combining active and passive surveillance, good risk communication strategy, a strengthened public and private sector partnership, and effective regional and international collaborations. Community restriction strategies such as school and workplace closures and cancellation of group events were not utilized as public health measures to delay the spread of the virus. Some health care facilities struggled with providing adequate isolation facilities. Conclusions The number of confirmed cases was small but the significant surge in ARI and SARI cases indicate that the impact of the virus on the island was moderate. As a result of 2009 H1N1, virological surveillance has improved significantly and local, regional and international partnerships have been strengthened.


Related Articles

  • Evaluation of Indirect Fluorescent Antibody Assays Compared to Rapid Influenza Diagnostic Tests for the Detection of Pandemic Influenza A (H1N1) pdm09. Nutter, Sandra; Cheung, Michele; Adler-Shohet, Felice C.; Krusel, Kathryn; Vogel, Kate; Meyers, Hildy // PLoS ONE;Mar2012, Vol. 7 Issue 3, p1 

    Performance of indirect fluorescent antibody (IFA) assays and rapid influenza diagnostic tests (RIDT) during the 2009 H1N1 pandemic was evaluated, along with the relative effects of age and illness severity on test accuracy. Clinicians and laboratories submitted specimens on patients with...

  • BATTLING H1N1. KEHOE, BOB // Health Facilities Management;Dec2009, Vol. 22 Issue 12, p12 

    The article provides an insider's perspective on the H1N1 flu pandemic and the many ripple effects caused by vaccine shortages. The earliest known and later confirmed case of H1N1 in the U.S. occurred in April 2009, when a 9-year-old girl in Imperial, California was struck by the virus. By April...

  • 2009 H1N1/Swine Flu -- Anatomy of an Outbreak. Wilde, James A. // Infectious Disease Alert;6/4/2009 Swine Flu, p1 

    The article offers information on the 2009 H1N1 swine flu outbreak. It discusses how flu activity is monitored at the state and national level in the U.S. It cites three reasons behind the increased urgency for swine flu investigation. It claims that the total number of infected patients has...

  • The 0.5 Pandemic. Hall, Stephen S. // New York;10/12/2009, Vol. 42 Issue 33, p30 

    The article examines the H1N1 influenza pandemic in New York City in 2009. Swine flu originated in pigs and research suggests that the strain has a complicated and exotic history. The Saint Francis Preparatory School has been called the epicenter of H1N1 in the city by local media due to the...

  • How to prepare for the second wave of swine flu.  // New Scientist;8/15/2009, Vol. 203 Issue 2721, p3 

    An introduction to a survey of more than 300 influenza and public health experts regarding the next wave of the swine flu pandemic is presented.

  • Effect of the Neuraminidase Mutation H274Y Conferring Resistance to Oseltamivir on the Replicative Capacity and Virulence of Old and Recent Human Influenza A(H1N1) Viruses. Baz, Mariana; Abed, Yacine; Simon, Philippe; Hamelin, Marie-Ève; Boivin, Guy // Journal of Infectious Diseases;3/1/2010, Vol. 201 Issue 5, p740 

    Background. The viral fitness of neuraminidase inhibitor (NAI)-resistant influenza viruses is believed to be impaired. Unexpectedly, an oseltamivir-resistant A(H1N1) variant containing the H274Y neuraminidase (NA) mutation recently disseminated worldwide, suggesting that the replication and...

  • Pre- and Postpandemic Estimates of 2009 Pandemic Influenza A(H1N1) Seroprotection to Inform Surveillance-Based Incidence, by Age, During the 2013–2014 Epidemic in Canada. Skowronski, Danuta M.; Chambers, Catharine; Sabaiduc, Suzana; Janjua, Naveed Z.; Li, Guiyun; Petric, Martin; Krajden, Mel; Purych, Dale; Li, Yan; De Serres, Gaston // Journal of Infectious Diseases;Jan2015, Vol. 211 Issue 1, p109 

    To understand the epidemic resurgence of influenza due to the 2009 pandemic influenza A(H1N1) strain (A[H1N1]pdm09) during the 2013–2014 influenza season, we compared age-related cross-sectional estimates of seroprotection before the pandemic (during 2009) and after the pandemic (during...

  • Pandemic 2009 (A)H1N1 influenza (swine flu) - the Manitoba experience. Embree, Joanne // Biochemistry & Cell Biology;Aug2010, Vol. 88 Issue 4, p589 

    The pattern of illness associated with the first wave of the pandemic influenza A H1N1 (swine flu) in the spring and early summer of 2009 in regions of the province of Manitoba in Canada was more severe, on a population basis, than any other northern hemisphere jurisdiction outside of Mexico...

  • Factores predictores de defunción en pacientes con neumonía por influenza A H1N1. Neri Salvador, Juan Carlos; Barranco Garduño, Lina Marcela; León Molina, Héctor; Tovar Serrano, Alejandro; Rendón Macías, Mario Enrique; Flores Murrieta, Francisco Javier // Medicina Interna de Mexico;sep/oct2011, Vol. 27 Issue 5, p421 

    Background: Influenza is usually a self-limiting disease. In April 2009, a new type of influenza A H1N1 virus was discovered. There were a lot of cases with severe pneumonia associated to this virus, although the lethal cases were less than expected. However, we must be still alert for future...

  • Influenza Virus A (H1N1) in Giant Anteaters (Myrmecophaga tridactyla). Nofs, Sally; Abd-Eldaim, Mohamed; Thomas, Kathy V.; Toplon, David; Rouse, Dawn; Kennedy, Melissa // Emerging Infectious Diseases;Jul2009, Vol. 15 Issue 7, p1081 

    In February 2007, an outbreak of respiratory disease occurred in a group of giant anteaters (Myrmecophaga tridactyla) at the Nashville Zoo. Isolates from 2 affected animals were identified in March 2007 as a type A influenza virus related to human influenza subtype H1N1.


Read the Article


Sorry, but this item is not currently available from your library.

Try another library?
Sign out of this library

Other Topics