The objective of the Vaccine Preventable Diseases Surveillance Program (VPDSP) is to provide surveillance reporting of nationally notifiable vaccine preventable diseases (VPDs) and allow territorial monitoring, analysis and timely reporting of data.
WHY IS SURVEILLANCE NEEDED?
- To serve as an early warning system in order to identify public health emergencies.
- To understand the epidemiology of a condition to set priorities and guide public health policy and strategies.
- The US Virgin Islands (USVI) is thought to have one of the lowest vaccination rates (estimated ~50%) among its local population. The high travel in the region combined with the low vaccination coverage has direct implications regarding vulnerability to infectious VPDs that can potentially be introduced by tourists.
WHY IS IT IMPORTANT?
- By monitoring data, the US Virgin Islands Department of Health (VIDOH) protects the community by ensuring vaccines remain effective and can address emerging issues such asnew virus strains, waning immunity or vaccine failure.
- Total number of reported cases for vaccine preventable diseases are submitted annually through the national surveillance system, allowing for federal agencies to collect and analyze national and territorial data.
- The VIDOH will monitor notifiable vaccine preventable diseases including enhanced surveillance for meningococcal disease, varicella, and acute flaccid myelitis.
- The USVI has its own surveillance system and the data is promptly uploaded to the national system.