Pandemic Influenza Preparedness (PIP) Framework: 5 countries report their achievements

WHO

Armenia, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan reported their achievements since first receiving WHO’s continuous support through the PIP Framework Partnership Contribution in 2014, which aims at building capacities that are fundamental to greater preparedness for the next influenza pandemic.

One of these capacities is the ability of countries to detect influenza viruses and to share viruses with WHO for influenza vaccine strain selection and global risk assessment. During the PIP Framework Annual Meeting in the WHO European Region, which took place in Copenhagen, Denmark, on 17–18 September 2018, the 5 countries presented key milestones in building such capacities. These included:

  • the development of a national influenza bulletin in 3 of the 5 countries;
  • WHO recognition of the national influenza centre in Armenia;
  • the increase from 2 to 3 countries sharing viruses with WHO collaborating centres;
  • the increase from 1 to all 5 countries scoring 100% correct in the WHO External Quality Assessment Project; and
  • the development of national guidelines for outbreak investigation and response and clinical management of patients with severe forms of influenza in all 5 countries.

The Annual Meeting also marked the transition from the PIP Framework Partnership Contribution High-Level Implementation Plan I (2014–2017) to the High-Level Implementation Plan II (2018–2023). Plan II focuses on further enhancing the quality of national influenza surveillance data and on ensuring that newly established or improved influenza surveillance systems are maintained in the long term by each country.

WHO will support countries to further institutionalize their national influenza surveillance systems. This includes determining the costs of operating the systems, and demonstrating the value of quality influenza surveillance data both at the national level for the purpose of public health decision-making, and at the global level to contribute to global influenza surveillance.

WHO’s recognition of a national influenza centre in the 3 remaining countries without one is also a priority. This requires countries to share influenza viruses with WHO, a prerequisite that remains to be implemented in 2 of the countries.

About the PIP Framework

The PIP Framework brings together Member States, industry, other stakeholders and WHO to implement a global approach to pandemic influenza preparedness and response. It aims to:

  • improve the sharing of influenza viruses with human pandemic potential; and
  • achieve more equitable access for Member States in need of pandemic vaccines and medicines used in a pandemic.