Journal Article

Impact of Epidemic Influenza A-Like Acute Respiratory Illness in a Remote Jungle Highland Population in Irian Jaya, Indonesia

A. L. Corwin, C. H. Simanjuntak, G. Ingkokusumo, N. Sukri, R. P. Larasati, B. Subianto, H. Z. Muslim, E. Burni, K. Laras, M. P. Putri, C. Hayes and N. Cox

in Clinical Infectious Diseases

Published on behalf of Infectious Diseases Society of America

Volume 26, issue 4, pages 880-888
Published in print April 1998 | ISSN: 1058-4838
Published online April 1998 | e-ISSN: 1537-6591 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/513917
Impact of Epidemic Influenza A-Like Acute Respiratory Illness in a Remote Jungle Highland Population in Irian Jaya, Indonesia

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A suspected epidemic of unknown etiology was investigated in April/May 1996 in the remote jungle highlands of easternmost Indonesia. Trend analysis demonstrates the area-wide occurrence of a major respiratory infection outbreak in November 1995 through February 1996. The monthly mean rate of respiratory infection episodes for the peak outbreak months (2,477 episodes/100,000 persons) was significantly higher (P < .0001) than for the 34 months leading up to the outbreak (109 episodes/100,000 persons). Notable were the high attack rates, particularly among adults: 202 episodes/1,000 persons aged 20–50 years in one community. Excess morbidity attributed to the outbreak was an estimated 4,338 episodes. The overall case-fatality rate was 15.1% of outbreak cases. Laboratory evidence confirmed the circulation of influenza A/Taiwan/1/86—like viruses in the study population, and high hemagglutination inhibition titer responses were indicative of recent infections. Historical documents from neighboring Papua New Guinea highlight the role of influenza A virus in repeated area outbreaks.

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Subjects: Infectious Diseases ; Immunology ; Public Health and Epidemiology ; Microbiology

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