Communicable disease surveillance is a multi-component system that monitors and analyzes data that includes – but is not limited to – demographic, geographic, and disease/condition-specific information. Accurate identification and timely reporting are integral parts of successful disease control, enabling public health agencies to:
- identify contacts who may be infected or other individuals at risk for infection,
- determine the incidence and prevalence of disease in a specific area of the state,
- assist physicians and hospitals in evaluating illnesses in their patients and communities, and
- assist the public in making better decisions regarding their health and lifestyle.
Successful communicable disease surveillance enhances control efforts; such as developing prevention/intervention strategies and policies, and responding to events involving potential exposure to communicable disease.
The goal of DHSS disease surveillance is to maintain an integrated statewide surveillance system for communicable, zoonotic, and environmentally induced health threats and to get this information rapidly to customers.
Protection of our community from the threats of uncontrolled communicable diseases in an estential responsibility of the entire puclic health system at the local, state and federal level. Communities face threats to its health from many sources. Loss of control over toxic substances, pollution or our water and air, accidents within our transportation sustem among others all represent threats. No threat however, is of greater concern than that of a disease organism that is out of control and affecting people.
Diseases that reportable according to Missouri Statute 19 CSR 20-20.020 are found by clicking here.
Reynolds County Health Center has 17 sites throughout the county that is contacted weekly to determine conditions that are being seen within the county. This allows your Health Center to track illnesses and possibilities for outbreaks.
Influenza is a highly contagious viral respiratory illness that affects the health of large numbers of people every year. Most people recover within a week, but a cough and tiredness can last two weeks or longer. Some of the complications caused by influenza include bacterial pneumonia, dehydration, and worsening of chronic medical conditions, such as congestive heart failure, asthma, or diabetes. Children may get sinus problems and ear infections as complications from the flu. Those aged 65 years and older, children under age 2, and persons of any age with chronic medical conditions are at highest risk for serious complications of flu. The most common complication is pneumonia. In the United States, influenza and pneumonia combined is among the top 10 leading causes of death. On average, influenza is annually associated with more than 36,000 deaths and more than 200,000 hospitalizations. In Missouri, influenza and pneumonia are associated with approximately 1,500 – 3,000 deaths per year. The economic impact of influenza illness is staggering. Studies have shown that in an average year, direct and indirect medical costs in the U.S. are in the billions.
Studies have indicated that influenza vaccine efficiency is approximately 70%-90% effective in preventing illness among persons 65 years of age or less. It is 30%-40% effective among the frail elderly, 50%-60% effective in preventing hospitalization, and approximately 80% effective in preventing death. The degree of effectiveness is dependent on a good match between the circulating influenza strains and the components included in the influenza vaccine each year. It also depends on the ability of each person’s immune system to effectively produce an antibody against the virus.
Don’t forget to get your flu shot this season