Vigilance and sentinels in global health security

Chris Lyttleton*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Global health security is increasingly reliant on vigilance to provide early warning of transnational health threats. In theory, this approach requires that sentinels, based in communities most affected by new or reemerging infectious diseases, deliver timely alerts of incipient risk. Medicalizing global safety also implies there are particular forms of insecurity that must be remedied to preempt disease spread. I examine vigilance in the context of spreading drug-resistant malaria in Southeast Asian border zones and argue that to act as sentinels, marginal groups vulnerable to infection must be able to articulate what social and behavioral factors prompt proliferating disease risks.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)327-342
Number of pages16
JournalMedical Anthropology: Cross Cultural Studies in Health and Illness
Issue number4
Early online date27 Feb 2018
Publication statusPublished - 19 May 2018


  • Global health security
  • malaria
  • migrants
  • sentinels
  • Southeast Asia
  • vigilance


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