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Title: Murray Valley encephalitis virus surveillance and control initiatives in Australia
Authors: Spencer, Jenean D
Azoulas, Joe
Broom, Annette K
Buick, Tim D
Daniels, Peter W
Doggett, Stephen L
Hapgood, George
Jarrett, Peter J
Lindsay, Michael
Lloyd, Glenis
Mackenzie, John S
Merianos, Angela
Moran, Rodney J
Ritchie, Scott A
Russell, Richard C
Smith, David W
Stenhouse, Fay O
Whelan, Peter I
Series/Report no.: Communicable Diseases Intelligence
Vol. 25 No. 2
Publisher: The Office of Health Protection in the Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing
Abstract: Mechanisms for monitoring MVE virus activity include surveillance of human cases, surveillance for activity in sentinel animals, monitoring of mosquito vectors and monitoring of weather conditions. Surveillance of human cases occurs in all states and territories by reporting of cases to health authorities. Mosquito vector surveillance includes mosquito trapping for speciation and enumeration of mosquitoes to monitor population sizes and relative composition. Virus isolation from mosquitos can also be undertaken to assess virus activity. Vector and animal surveillance varies across the jurisdictions. Sentinel flocks of chickens are maintained in four jurisdictions (Western Australia, Northern Territory, Victoria and New South Wales) with collaborations between Western Australia and the Northern Territory. Mosquito monitoring complements the surveillance of vertebrate hosts in these jurisdictions. In addition, other mosquito monitoring programs exist in other states (including South Australia and Queensland). Meteorological surveillance can assist in the prediction of potential MVE virus activity by signalling conditions that have been associated with outbreaks of Murray Valley encephalitis in humans in the past. Predictive models of MVE virus activity for south-eastern Australia have been developed, but due to the infrequency of outbreaks, are yet to be clearly demonstrated as useful for the forecasting of public health risk. Monitoring of weather conditions and vector surveillance (mosquito trapping for speciation and enumeration of mosquitoes) determine whether there is a potential for MVE activity to occur. Virus isolation from trapped mosquitoes is necessary to define whether MVE is actually present, but is difficult to deliver in a timely fashion. Monitoring of sentinel animals indicates whether MVE transmission to vertebrates is actually occurring. Positive results in these systems signals the progressively increased risk of human disease occurring. Public health control measures may include advice to the general public and mosquito control programs to reduce the numbers of both mosquito larvae and adult vectors. Strategic plans for public health action in the event of MVE virus activity are currently developed or being developed in New South Wales, Northern Territory, South Australia, Western Australia and Victoria. A southern tri-state agreement exists between Health Departments of New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia and the Commonwealth Department of Health and Aged Care. Under this agreement all partners co-operate and provide assistance in predicting and combating outbreaks of mosquito borne disease in south-eastern Australia. The newly formed National Arbovirus Advisory Committee (NAAC) is a working party providing advice to the Communicable Diseases Network Australia (CDNA) on arbovirus surveillance and control.
Publication Date: 2001-04
ISSN: 0725-3141
Type: Journal Article
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10137/225
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