In February this year, the ministry of Health and Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) announced an outbreak of typhoid in Kampala and neighboring districts of Mukono and Wakiso. By June, when the country was declared typhoid-free, 14,304 suspected cases of typhoid had been registered.
As a first step in exploring the outbreak, health investigators employed a specific case definition test, which includes laboratory confirmation of the disease. It was discovered that four among the 16 specimen tested were positive.
For the other majority, a sensitive case definition that uses only signs and symptoms of the disease was used for diagnosis. But one respected doctor in Kampala recently stated that many people in Kampala have been treated for typhoid yet they did not have the disease.
And according to Dr Daniel Tumwine, the disadvantage of a sensitive case definition is that it captures many false-positives i.e. people who meet case definition of the disease but do not have the disease.
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