Fiji CBS

Fiji Red Cross Society 

Dates of implementation: 2021 - present

Settings: Rural (potential expansion to urban areas)

Context: Preparedness

Data collection system: Previously KoBo, transitioned to Nyss platform in 2023

Partners: Fiji Ministry of Health and Human Services (MHMS), Australian Red Cross

Country Context

Fiji is a Pacific Island nation with communities in remote, island and urban contexts. The CBS program commenced in 2021 to enhance epidemic preparedness in communities, and provide a channel for earlier notification to the Government health and surveillance staff about outbreak-prone diseases. 

Fiji is seasonally hit by tropical cyclones and is vulnerable to outbreaks of leptospirosis, typhoid fever, dengue fever, diarrhoea, measles and COVID-19 which are the priority diseases included in the volunteer health activities and CBS system. 

The program covers 84 villages in the Northern Division and 117 villages in the Western Division, with 9-10 team leaders and 201 volunteers. The MHMS are closely engaged and are notified when the trained volunteers and Team Leaders report potential alerts by SMS.

CBS early detection and early action improves the health of communities

An example of the successful CBS detection, notification and action is shared below:

January 2024 – it is the wet season in Fiji there is an abundance of excess water around villages and homes. On the 1st to 2nd January the Nyss system received 28 alerts from Raviravi village in Bua, Northern Division. The alerts continued, culminating in 32 alerts from 1 – 26 January for fever and body pain (11), fever and rash (8), watery diarrhoea (7), and fever, cough, difficulty breathing (6). 

The CBS volunteer/community health worker referred those suffering from illness to the nearby health centre for care, and on 3rd January FRCS notified the MHMS who responded promptly.  A team with Medical Officer, Health Inspector and Nurse were deployed to the village where they provided health awareness information door-to-door, distributed soap sachets and tested the local water source. The event was confirmed negative for severe epidemic diseases and the community received the assistance they needed for improving health and sanitation practices in their village. Fiji Red Cross are proud of their volunteers and team leaders and their work for the rapid detection and rapid action which improved the wellbeing of the community.

Key Results & Performance Indicators
Total Number of supervisors 9
Total number of Volunteers trained in CBS 201
Number of targeted communities with active CBS volunteer 201
% active volunteers submitting CBS reports ‘on time’ (weekly) 84% in 2023
% accurate CBS reports (true vs false) 90% in 2023