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Title:

Retrospective identification of key activities in Uganda’s preparedness measures related to the 2018–2020 EVD outbreak in eastern DRC utilizing a framework evaluation tool

Authors:
Christina Potter, Lucia Mullen, Steven Ssendagire, Rhoda K. Wanyenze, Alex Riolexus Ario, Doreen Tuhebwe, Susan Babirye, Rebecca Nuwematsiko, Jennifer B. Nuzzo
Date posted:
May 11, 2022
Publication type:
Article
Publication:
PLOS Global Public Health 2(5): e0000428
DOI:
https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pgph.0000428
See also:
Introduction:
Uganda has engaged in numerous capacity building activities related to outbreak preparedness over the last two decades and initiated additional just-in-time preparedness activities after the declaration of the 2018–2020 Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) outbreak in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). When Uganda faced importation events related to the DRC outbreak in June—August 2019, the country’s ability to prevent sustained in-country transmission was attributed to these long-term investments in preparedness. In order to help prepare countries for similar future scenarios, this analysis reviewed evidence from Uganda’s response to the June—August 2019 importation events to identify preparedness activities and capacities that may have enabled Uganda to identify and isolate infected individuals or otherwise prevent further transmission. Content from 143 grey literature documents gathered via targeted and systematic searches from June 6, 2019 to October 29, 2019 and six interviews of key informants were utilized to inform a framework evaluation tool developed for this study. A conceptual framework of Uganda’s preparedness activities was developed and evaluated against timelines of Uganda’s response activities to the June—August 2019 EVD importation events based on the applicability of a preparedness activity to a response activity and the contribution of the said response activity to the prevention or interruption of transmission. Preparedness activities related to coordination, health facility preparation, case referral and management, laboratory testing and specimen transport, logistics and resource mobilization, and safe and dignified burials yielded consistent success across both importation events while point of entry screening was successful in one importation event but not another according to the framework evaluation tool. Countries facing similar threats should consider investing in these preparedness areas. Future analyses should validate and expand on the use of the framework evaluation tool.

 

 

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