Skip to content



Recommended case definitions

Rubella control/elimination programs should use the following standardized case definitions, revised from PAHO's Measles Eradication Field Guide, 1999, and the WHO Recommended Surveillance Standards from the 2nd. Ed., June 1999, revised by the PAHO's Communicable Diseases Program.

  • Suspected rubella case: any patient in whom a health care provider suspects the possibility of rubella.

    In suspected a rubella case, a serum sample should be collected from the patient upon initial contact with the health provider. This sample must be collected within 30 days of rash onset to be considered adequate.
  •  

  • Laboratory-confirmed case: a suspected rubella case that after complete investigation is:
    1. Confirmed as rubella using commercially available enzyme immunoassays (EIA) for measles or for rubella IgM antibodies, and/or
    2. Confirmed by isolation rubella virus and/or
    3. Epidemiologically linked to another laboratory-confirmed case (the epidemiological link is established if any contact between the suspected case and the laboratory-confirmed case has occurred anytime during the month prior to rash onset).

     

  • Clinically-confirmed case: a suspected rubella case that is not completely investigated for any reason. This could include: patients that died before the investigation was complete, patients lost to follow-up, or patients without adequate specimens submitted for laboratory analysis.
  •  

  • Discarded: a suspected rubella case that has been completely investigated, including an adequate blood specimen, which lacks serologic evidence of infection, has no virus isolated, and does not have epidemiological link to a laboratory-confirmed case. If laboratory results indicate another viral infection compatible with the clinical symptoms, such as dengue, the case should be discarded as well.

    Last Updated on Friday, 09 April 2010 09:46

NIM Rubella Publications

  • Rubella Timeline Cron
  • adhoc meeting

    Ad-hoc Meeting of Experts to Establish Best Practices in CRS Surveillance.

  • Vaccination Campaing 2007-2008

    Vaccination Campaigns Programmed for Rubella and Measles Elimination in the Americas 2007-2008.

  • Progress Report Rubella

    Adult Vaccination Campaigns for Rubella Elimination, The Americas, 1998–2007.

  • Rubella Case Definition

    Case definition: Rubella

    Adapted from Epidemiological Bulletin, Vol. 20 No. 3, September 1999
    • Rationale for Surveillance
    • Recommended Case Definitions
    • Recommended Surveillance Measures
    • Recommended Minimum Data Elements
    • Principal Use of Data for Decision-Making
    • Main Surveillance Indicators

    Rationale for Surveillance

    Introduction:

    Rubella virus continues to circulate freely in most countries of the region. After a complete investigation, many suspected measles cases are ultimately found to be rubella. Moreover, cases of the Congenital Rubella Syndrome (CRS) have been found in all countries of the Region that have established CRS surveillance systems. This suggests that CRS is a major public health problem in all countries of the Americas.

Regional Office for the Americas of the World Health Organization
525 Twenty-third Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20037, United States of America
Tel.: +1 (202) 974-3000 Fax: +1 (202) 974-3663

© Pan American Health Organization. All rights reserved.