A Large Scabies Outbreak at a Prison in Southern Thailand, April – August 2017

Main Article Content

Nisa Limsuwan Bhurinud Salakij Suppakrit Thanajirasak Panithee Thammawijaya


Scabies is a neglected contagious skin disease and mostly occurs in crowded environment. After an increase in scabies cases at a prison, an investigation team was deployed. The objectives were to describe the epidemiological characteristics of cases, identify risk factors for infection and implement control measures. We defined a scabies confirmed case as a person with at least one itchy skin lesion, and diagnosed as scabies by both a physician and a dermatologist. We inspected the prison environment and observed sanitation practices. A case-control study was conducted among male inmates to identify risk factors for scabies. The overall attack rate was 29.4% among inmates. All 251 confirmed cases were typical scabies and 250 were male. The environmental inspection revealed poor hygiene and overcrowded at men’s zones. Sharing a bedroom (Adjusted odds ratio AOR = 9.72, 95% CI = 5.33-17.73) and sharing clothes with cases (AOR = 3.61, 95% CI = 1.66-7.84) were significantly associated with having scabies. After interventions of setting scabies surveillance, separation of new comers, universal treatment for all inmates, and disinfection of bedrooms, bedding and clothes with detergents, no more new cases were found. Improving sanitation especially in bedrooms, enhancing scabies detection, and early interventions after case detection could help prevent scabies outbreak in prisons.
Keywords: Scabies, outbreak, prison, Thailand, control measure

Article in English

Article Details

How to Cite
LIMSUWAN, Nisa et al. A Large Scabies Outbreak at a Prison in Southern Thailand, April – August 2017. OSIR Journal, [S.l.], v. 12, n. 2, p. 61-67, july 2019. ISSN 2651-1061. Available at: <https://osirjournal.net/index.php/osir/article/view/144>. Date accessed: 10 june 2023.

Most read articles by the same author(s)

1 2 > >>