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Dedicated epidemiologist cadre

Dedicated epidemiologist cadre

In News

India plans to ready a bank of specialists to tackle outbreaks of infectious diseases in the future

About the News

  • Ministry of health (MoH) has recently proposed to set up a cadre of frontline epidemiologists to counter future pandemics.
  • In this direction, National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) of health ministry had previously begun training programmes for epidemiologists across the country which have already been completed in Rajasthan, Uttarakhand and Jammu & Kashmir.
  • The next sessions are planned for Arunachal Pradesh and Andhra Pradesh.
  • Zoonotic threats have in recent years assumed significance given the epidemics emanating from animal sources, including avian flu and covid-19.

 

What are the major highlights of the Plan?

  • Training: The plan is to train epidemiologists across India so that there is a ready bank of specialists to tackle any outbreaks of infectious diseases in the future. The specialist cadre will also be trained to devise strategies for other public health challenges of the future.
  • Epidemic Intelligence Service: India to leverage the already cadre of EIS who will be involved in the training programme and roll-out.
  • Cadre composition: Each training session is expected to be attended by about 50-60 epidemiologists from at least 20 districts of a particular region. Training will also involve microbiologists, district surveillance officers and paramedical staff.
  • New course: A 3/3 frontline epidemiology training course will be strategically planned and will happen every three months for three days wherein district level medical officers participate.
  • Collaborations: Field Epidemiological training will be done in collaboration with veterinary institutes which will look for the zoonotic threats in future along with concepts and techniques of molecular epidemiology.
  • Types of training: Three types of training will be provided to the epidemiologists. The first month will include basic epidemiology concepts, second month to train how to review the situation for surveillance and in the third month, epidemiologists will be given a task -- they have to identify any particular disease in their district and write a report on an outbreak investigation.

 

Sources:

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