The impact of public health control measures during the SARS epidemic in mainland China

Department of Public Health, Erasmus MC, University Medical Center Rotterdam, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.
Tropical Medicine & International Health (Impact Factor: 2.33). 11/2009; 14 Suppl 1:101-4. DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-3156.2009.02348.x
Source: PubMed


We tracked the effective reproductive number (Rt) over time to assess the impact of important public health control measures in the five most SARS-affected geographic areas in mainland China. As soon as the Chinese authorities gained full control of all activities to combat SARS, Rt decreased dramatically and consistently below one. Many control measures that seriously affected public life were implemented afterwards, i.e., when the epidemic was already dying down.

Download full-text


Available from: Ben Cooper, Oct 24, 2014
13 Reads
  • Source
    • "Every doctor needs to obtain certain credits for annual qualification, however, most training is focused on clinical medicine, while public health training and disaster medicine training are overlooked. After the SARS epidemic in 2003 and Wenchuan Earthquake in 2008, public health emergency and disaster medicine training have received increasing attention [10-12]. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Disaster Medicine training is not included in medical education curriculum in China, even though the country has suffered various disasters annually. We intended to assess the need for continual education regarding disaster management for health professionals in China. A survey was conducted among 324 health professionals who participated in the response to the Wenchuan earthquake medical relief and public health assessment in October, 2008. The most of participants (67.3%) received informal disaster medicine training, and only a few (12.7%) participated in disaster drills. Most of the participants wanted to get continual education about disaster medicine training (89.8%), but prefer on-line training course for the flexibility of time scheduling and travel through China. The need for continual disaster medicine training is high; health professionals should be equipped with knowledge and skills for disaster management.
    BMC Public Health 02/2011; 11:89. DOI:10.1186/1471-2458-11-89 · 2.26 Impact Factor
  • Source
    Tropical Medicine & International Health 11/2009; 14 Suppl 1(s1):1-3. DOI:10.1111/j.1365-3156.2009.02349.x · 2.33 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: This paper provides a review of a recently published series of studies that give a detailed and comprehensive documentation of the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) epidemic in mainland China, which severely struck the country in the spring of 2003. The epidemic spanned a large geographical extent but clustered in two areas: first in Guangdong Province, and about 3 months later in Beijing with its surrounding areas. Reanalysis of all available epidemiological data resulted in a total of 5327 probable cases of SARS, of whom 343 died. The resulting case fatality ratio (CFR) of 6.4% was less than half of that in other SARS-affected countries or areas, and this difference could only partly be explained by younger age of patients and higher number of community acquired infections. Analysis of the impact of interventions demonstrated that strong political commitment and a centrally coordinated response was the most important factor to control SARS in mainland China, whereas the most stringent control measures were all initiated when the epidemic was already dying down. The long-term economic consequence of the epidemic was limited, much consumption was merely postponed, but for Beijing irrecoverable losses to the tourist sector were considerable. An important finding from a cohort study was that many former SARS patients currently suffer from avascular osteonecrosis, as a consequence of the treatment with corticosteroids during their infection. The SARS epidemic provided valuable information and lessons relevant in controlling outbreaks of newly emerging infectious diseases, and has led to fundamental reforms of the Chinese health system. In particular, a comprehensive nationwide internet-based disease reporting system was established.
    Infectious disease reports 03/2011; 3(1):e2. DOI:10.4081/idr.2011.e2