HIV/AIDS Surveillance Systems: A Case Study of Egypt

Nesmah Elkestawi, David Johnston


Current estimates of HIV/AIDS incidences are thought to be inaccurate according to external organizations such as WHO and UNAIDS. It is important to maintain an accurate estimate of prevalence to avoid an unexpected outbreak of a high-level
epidemic. Our method of analyzing Egypt’s surveillance system comes primarily from comparisons to other Eastern Mediterranean countries. Research on these regional
HIV/AIDS surveillance systems was conducted by studying publications printed by organizations that deal with these issues. To gain primary perspectives on the systems in Egypt, interviews were conducted with representatives of the organizations World Health Organization (WHO) and Family Health International (FHI) in Egypt.

Our research has shown that Egypt’s current HIV/AIDS surveillance system is not operating effectively. Instead, it is in a transitional state to an improved and updated system that, if implemented correctly, could provide accurate surveillance.

The area that was found to need the largest amount of improvement was the awareness of the general population and high risk groups about HIV/AIDS. Without the presence of
this awareness, a surveillance system would not be successful.


HIV; AIDS; health surveillance; disease prevention

Full Text:



Berkelman RL, Bryan RT, Osterholm MT, LeDuc JW, and Hughes JM. Infectious Disease Surveillance: A Crumbling Foundation. Science 1994 Apr;264(5157):368-70.

Boerma JT, Holt E, and Black R. Measurement of Biomarkers in Surveys in Developing Countries: Opportunities and Problems. Population and Development Review 2001 June;27:303-14.

Brookmeyer R. AIDS, Epidemics, and Statistics. Biometrics 1996 Sep;52:781-96.

Coca-Cola Africa Foundation. Our 2004-2005 HIV/AIDS Initiatives in Africa. [Report on Internet]. 2004. [Cited 2006 Mar 10]. [860 KB]. Available from:

Combat HIV/AIDS, Malaria, and Other Major Diseases. Millennium Development Goals. (2004). United Nations, Ministry of Planning. Retrieved February 27th, 2006,


Family Health International [FHI]. National Guidelines for Voluntary HIV Counseling and Testing. [Report on the Internet]. 2004 [Cited 2006 Mar 10]. [12.4 MB]. Available from:

HIV/AIDS: Stand Up for the Challenge. (2005). Retrieved March 10, 2006, from

Initiating Second Generation HIV Surveillance systems: practical guidelines. (2002). Retrieved March 10, 2006, from

McCormick A. Estimating the Size of the HIV Epidemic by Using Mortality Data. Phil Trans of the RSL 1989 Sep;325(1226):163-73.

Shahine, Gihan. Facing up to AIDS. Al-Ahram. 2004 March 4-10. Available from:

Srikameswaran, A. Egypt Confronting HIV; Like other Muslim cultures with strictures against promiscuity and drug use, Egyptians have been slow to admit a problem. (2005)., Health, Science, and Environment. Retrieved

February 27th, 2006, from

Statistics and Surveillance of HIV/AIDS. (2006). Department of Health and Human Resources; Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Retrieved February 27th, 2006, from

Strengthening health sector response to HIV/AIDS and sexually transmitted infections in the WHO Eastern Mediterranean Region. (2005). Retrieved March 10,

, from

The Pre-Survaillance Assesment; Guidleines for planning serosurveillance of HIV, prevalence of sexually transmitted infections, and the behavioral components of second generation surveillance of HIV. (2003). Retrieved March 10, 2006, from

United States Agency for International Development (US) [USAID]. Country Profile: Egypt HIV/AIDS. The Synergy Project; 2004 February. 4 p. Available from:

United States Agency for International Development (USAID). Health Profile: Egypt HIV/AIDS [report on internet]. [cited 2005 Feb 28]. Available from

What is AIDS? HIV/AIDS Basics. (2006). The Body; The Complete HIV/AIDS Resource (AIDS Infonet). Retrieved February 27th, 2006, from


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.