UPDATED INTERIM U.S. SARS CASE DEFINTION
For purposes of case finding and surveillance in the United States, the March 17th CDC SARS case definition has been updated as follows:
- Temperature must be measured
- SARS areas are limited to those with suspected or documented community transmission; this differs from the WHO definition as it
excludes areas where secondary transmission has been limited to only health care workers or direct household contacts.
Note : the list of SARS areas will be updated as new information becomes available.
Respiratory illness of unknown etiology with onset since February 1, 2003, and the following criteria:
- Measured temperature >100.4°F (>38°C)
- One or more clinical findings of respiratory illness (e.g. cough, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, hypoxia or radiographic
findings of either pneumonia or acute respiratory distress syndrome)
- Travel within 10 days of onset of symptoms to an area with suspected or documented community transmission of SARS (see list below;
excludes areas with secondary cases limited to healthcare workers or direct household contacts)
- Close contact* within 10 days of onset of symptoms with either a person with a respiratory illness and travel to a SARS area or a
person under investigation or suspected of having SARS
* Close contact is defined as having cared for, having lived with, or having had direct contact with respiratory secretions and /or body
fluids of a patient suspected of having SARS.
List of areas with documented or suspected community transmission of SARS: Hong Kong Special Administrative Region and Guangdong
province, Peoples' Republic of China; Hanoi, Vietnam; and Singapore
Note: Suspect cases with either radiographic evidence of pneumonia or respiratory distress syndrome; or evidence of
unexplained respiratory distress syndrome by autopsy are designated "probable" cases by the WHO case definition.
Categories of Health Alert messages:
- Health Alert: Conveys the highest level of importance; warrants immediate action or attention.
- Health Advisory: Provides important information for a specific incident or situation; may not require immediate action.
- Health Update: Provides updated information regarding an incident or situation; unlikely to require immediate action.
NOTE: This page is for informational purposes only and dated material (e.g. temporary websites) may not be available.