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Severe acute respiratory syndrome; in the absence of SARS-CoV transmission worldwide : guidance for surveillance, clinical and laboratory evaluation, and reporting
  • Published Date:
    January 21, 2004
Filetype[PDF-383.32 KB]

  • Alternative Title:
    In the absence of SARS-CoV transmission worldwide : guidance for surveillance, clinical and laboratory evaluation, and reporting ; Guidance for surveillance, clinical and laboratory evaluation, and reporting ;
  • Description:
    I. Background -- II. Clinical features of SARS-CoV disease -- III. Surveillance: early case detection -- IV. Infection control and clinical evaluation -- V. Laboratory testing for SARS-CoV -- VI. Reporting of potential SARS-CoV cases -- Appendix 1. In the absence of person-to-person transmission of SARS-CoV worldwide: guidance for evaluation and management of patients requiring hospitalization for radiographically confirmed pneumonia -- Appendix 2. Guidelines for collecting specimens from potential SARS patients.

    Severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) came to global attention in February 2003, when officials in China informed the World Health Organization (WHO) about 305 cases of atypical pneumonia that had occurred in Guangdong Province. By the time the new infectious disease was declared contained in July 2003, more than 8,000 cases and 780 deaths had been reported from 29 countries worldwide. Since then, active global surveillance for SARS-associated coronavirus (SARS-CoV) disease in humans has detected no laboratory-confirmed person-to-person transmission of SARS-CoV. No one knows if, when, or where person-to-person transmission of SARS-CoV will recur. However, the rapidity of spread of infection and the high levels of morbidity and mortality associated with SARS-CoV call for careful monitoring for the recurrence of transmission and preparations for the rapid implementation of control measures. The 2003 global outbreaks demonstrated the ease with which SARS-CoV can seed and spread in human populations when cases remain undetected or when infected persons are not cared for in controlled environments that reduce the risk of transmission to others. The two laboratory-acquired infections and the recent cases in Southern China show that SARS-CoV continues to be a threat. Early detection of SARS cases and contacts, plus swift and decisive implementation of containment measures, are therefore essential to prevent transmission. Although the United States had only a limited SARS-CoV outbreak during the 2003 epidemic -- with only eight laboratory-confirmed cases and no significant local spread -- the U.S. population is clearly vulnerable to the more widespread, disruptive outbreaks experienced in other countries. During this period of no known person-to-person transmission of SARS- CoV in the world, healthcare and public health officials must therefore do what they can to prepare for the possibility that SARS-CoV transmission may recur. This document provides guidance for surveillance, clinical and laboratory evaluation, and reporting in the setting of no known person-to-person transmission of SARS-CoV worldwide. Recommendations are derived from Public Health Guidance for Community-Level Preparedness and Response to Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) www.cdc.gov/ncidod/sars/guidance/index.htm. If such transmission recurs anywhere in the world, CDC will promptly review all available information and provide additional guidance via the Health Alert Network (HAN), Epi-X, and partner organizations. Current information will also be posted on CDC's SARS website: www.cdc.gov/sars.

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