Responding to the polio outbreak in Papua, Alertasia Foundation supported Indonesia Epidemiology Association (Perhimpunan Epidemiologi Indonesia - PAEI) in organizing Training of Rapid Convenience Assessment (RCA) on Acute Flaccid Paralysis (AFP) on 13-14 May at Hotel Grand Abepura, Papua. 

PAEI will assign 9 consultants as technical assistants in 9 districts in Papua to help the government in achieving target coverage of national imunization program (sub Pekan Imunisasi Nasional – Sub PIN) and AFP surveillance with strengthening program for Early Warning and Response System for every districts. The training organized mainly to help the consultant in preparing their skills and knowledge in conducting the program. The specific objectives of the training are:
  • To help the participants in understanding the background of polio outbreak prevention program;
  • To increase the technical skill set in conducting the program, consist of: RCA, Simple readiness assessment (SRA), AFP surveillance, sampling management and laboratory check, EWARS method, and activity management and reporting;
  • To conduct the field work for RCA, SRA, and Hospital Record Review (HRR) in Papua.

The in-class training led by representatives from 2 (two) Public Health Office officials. Whilst in conducting the field work, the training participants assisted by the immunization and surveillance officials from 3 Health Centers in Jayapura and Medical Record staff from the Public Hospital.

The Field Work Training
Following the method given during in-class training, in performing RCA, the participants devided into 3 groups and conducted the field work in three nearby local health centers; Abepura, Kotaraja and Elly Uyo. RCA performed by using ODK Collect method with andriod cellphone. 25 houses were surveyed, and it is found that from 55 children, 12 children were not immunized as they were not present (assumed to be traveled somewhere else) during the immunization program.

During Simple Readiness Assessment training, the training participants given time to conduct an interview with the immunization manager of the health center using ODK Collect method. The interview process went smooth, however to get more insightful information, the questionnaire made for interview needs to be more technical and avoid questions that is only intend to get general information.
The observation for the Surveillance AFP was conducted by focusing on the medical record of Public Hospital's patients from January to April 2019. 23 records related to symptoms of AFP cases were found, and 1 sample was taken to the City Health Office for further laboratory examination.
After the training, the Provincial and District Health Officials will work together with the consultants to support the technical assistance program. The second phase of the RCA will be conducted from July – August 2019. This program is expected to be completed by the end of August 2019 after series of evaluation meetings.