Milestones of PPHSN development


  • Inter-agency Meeting on Health Information Requirements in the South Pacific is held in Noumea.


  • The Pacific Public Health Surveillance Working Group, given its mandate by SPC member nations through the Fifteenth Regional Conference of Heads of Health Services in Noumea, prepares the ground for PPHSN.
  • Design, trial and validation – before further utilisation at country level – of a methodology (PacSel) to select priority communicable diseases and health indicators for surveillance.
  • Pacific Islands Meeting on Public Health Surveillance is held in Noumea: PPHSN is created. The Working Group becomes the Coordinating Body of PPHSN, with SPC as Focal Point.


  • PacNet is established.
  • Hospital-based EPI active surveillance is implemented.


  • After touring the region, Mahomed Patel writes a reference report for SPC and PPHSN: Service-oriented Training in Public Health: A Model for Enhancing Public Health Surveillance in the Pacific. The monograph Public Health Surveillance in the Pacific is published.
  • SPC starts publishing Inform’ACTION, thein of PPHSN (ongoing).
  • Pacific Telehealth conference takes place in Noumea.


  • SPC runs two series of sub-regional training sessions in public health surveillance.


  • Training programme for Diploma in Public Health Practice starts at Fiji School of Medicine (FSMed).
  • Meeting on epidemiological surveillance of HIV, AIDS, STIs and other communicable diseases with outbreak potential for Pacific Island countries is organised.


  • Training programme for Master of Public Health Practice starts at FSMed.
  • Inaugural meeting of PPHSN Public Health Laboratory Network (LabNet) is held.
  • PacNet-restricted is established.


  • PICTs nominate their EpiNet response teams: EpiNet, the response arm of PPHSN, is established.
  • Pacific Health Dialog issue on Telehealth is published.

Dec 2001–Mar 2002

  • Sub-regional EpiNet workshops I, II and III are held, with draft surveillance and response guidelines developed for the six priority epidemic diseases of PPHSN, and recommendations written for Pacific organisation, collaboration and communication in this area.


  • Series of training sessions in epidemiology and outbreak investigation starts.
  • PPHSN website is created: .
  • PPHSN links with US resources against bioterrorism.
  • Evaluations of rapid diagnostic kits for leptospirosis and dengue are performed by the Pasteur Institute of New Caledonia.


  • Response to severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) threat with the creation of PPHSN SARS Task Force. PPHSN Guidelines for the Preparedness, Surveillance and Response to SARS in PICTs are developed, published online and regularly updated.
  • Regional EpiNet and LabNet workshops are organised, with the following main areas addressed: SARS and infection control, planning against influenza, PPHSN projects, PPHSN extension to other diseases, International Health Regulations, and LabNet development.
  • PPHSN Strategic Plan 2003–2006 is developed.
  • Research project “Multi-centre survey on incidence and public health impact of leptospirosis in the Pacific” is developed and implemented.


  • Second Regional EpiNet Workshop on “PPHSN preparedness for influenza and other potential threats like dengue and SARS” is organised.
  • PPHSN Influenza Specialist Group is formed.
  • Advice on avian influenza (bird flu) for human health and animal health is compiled by PPHSN partners.
  • PPHSN guidelines for influenza preparedness and control and influenza pandemic preparedness are developed (published in 2005).
  • PPHSN Technical Working Group on Foodborne Disease Surveillance is identified.
  • Project on “Building ICT capacities for public health surveillance” is launched in US-affiliated PICTs.


  • Projects to support influenza surveillance and pandemic preparedness are initiated.
  • Data for Decision Making training course (a Pacific model of the Field Epidemiology Training Programme) commences.
  • Infection control (IC) measures are promoted and PICTs’ IC capacity is assessed.
  • Workshop on identification and surveillance of vector mosquitoes is organised in Guam.


  • PICNet, the Pacific Regional Infection Control Network, is launched.
  • Regional workshop “LabNet 2006” is organised.
  • Global Salmonella-Surveillance (GSS) Regional Training Course for PICTs is organised.
  • Pacific Regional Influenza Pandemic Preparedness Project (PRIPPP) is finalised and its implementation started.
  • Laboratory-based influenza surveillance project “Increasing influenza surveillance in the Pacific Island region” commences in five PICTs.
  • Workshop on identification and surveillance of vector mosquitoes is organised in the Northern Mariana Islands.
  • Pacific Health Dialog issue on Pacific health surveillance and response is published.
  • Directory of PPHSN Resources is published.
  • Pacific Entomological Assessment Project is initiated.