Despite establishing COVID-19 monitoring measures within the existing routine national surveillance system and significant efforts to conduct testing, contact tracing, and case investigations, Government of Malawi institutions at both the national and district levels faced many challenges in mounting an effective response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The existing COVID-19 surveillance system relied on retrospective data and it struggled to establish the magnitude of community transmission or identify emerging variants.
In June 2022, in collaboration with the Public Health Institute of Malawi and support from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, I-TECH began sentinel surveillance monitoring of COVID-19 in seven sites. The COVID-19 sentinel surveillance system in Malawi was able to quickly detect changes in positivity rates and the emergence of variants. Read more about key findings and methods in I-TECH’s Sentinel Surveillance program brief.