Challenges in Implementing Surveillance Tools of High-Income Countries (HICs) in Low Middle Income Countries (LMICs )

Curr Treat Options Infect Dis. 2020;12(3):191-201. doi: 10.1007/s40506-020-00229-2. Epub 2020 Aug 28.


Purpose of review: Surveillance of communicable diseases is essential in all countries to prevent and control infections, to detect outbreaks and also to see the effects of interventions. The data should be reliable, and collection, analysis and feedback as well as the action based on this data should be fast. In this article, author discusses the limitations the Low Middle income Countries (LMICs) have in implementing disease surveillance and some suggestions for improvement.

Recent findings: Integrated Disease Surveillance and Response (IDSR) has been implemented successfully through most of the countries in Africa though they belong to low or LMIC. Major barriers for surveillance of Healthcare Associated Infections in LMICs are non-availability of adequate number of healthcare personnel such as infection control personnel as well as not having an integrated healthcare system with an effective data flow. For some infections, not having proper diagnostic facilities is a major obstacle. An important capacity limitation in clinical laboratories of LMICs is identification of antimicrobial resistant organisms as well as other pathogens to species level. This affects the surveillance of infections and antimicrobial resistance.

Summary: Use of modern technology, capacity building including the human resources as well as the laboratory capacity in healthcare setting, improving data communication methods, are the main recommendations made. Education and training of healthcare staff as well as educating the general public to change the attitudes of people is another aspect that we need to concentrate.

Keywords: AMR; HAI; Surveillance in LMIC; Surveillance of communicable diseases; Surveillance tools of HIC.

Publication types

  • Review