Operational Coverage and Timeliness of Reactive Case Detection for Malaria Elimination in Zanzibar, Tanzania.
ABSTRACT: Since 2012, the Zanzibar Malaria Elimination Program has been implementing reactive case detection (RACD). Health facility (HF) staff send individual malaria case notifications by using mobile phones, triggering a review of HF records and malaria testing and treatment at the household level by a district malaria surveillance officer. We assessed the completeness and timeliness of this system, from case notification to household-level response. We reviewed two years (2015-2016) of primary register information in 40 randomly selected HFs on Zanzibar's two islands Unguja and Pemba and database records of case notifications from all registered HFs for the period 2013-16. The operational coverage of the system was calculated as proportion of HF-registered cases that were successfully reviewed and followed up at their household. Timeliness was defined as completion of each step within 1 day. Public HFs notified almost all registered cases (91% in Unguja and 87% in Pemba), and 74% of cases registered at public HFs were successfully followed up at their household in Unguja and 79% in Pemba. Timely operational coverage (defined as each step, diagnosis to notification, notification to review, and review to household-level response, completed within 1 day) was achieved for only 25% of registered cases in Unguja and 30% in Pemba. Records and data from private HFs on Unguja indicated poor notification performance in the private sector. Although the RACD system in Zanzibar achieved high operational coverage, timeliness was suboptimal. Patients diagnosed with malaria at private HFs and hospitals appeared to be largely missed by the RACD system.
Project description:BACKGROUND: The emergence of pyrethroid resistance in the malaria vector, Anopheles arabiensis, threatens to undermine the considerable gains made towards eliminating malaria on Zanzibar. Previously, resistance was restricted to the island of Pemba while mosquitoes from Unguja, the larger of the two islands of Zanzibar, were susceptible. Here, we characterised the mechanism(s) responsible for resistance on Zanzibar using a combination of gene expression and target-site mutation assays. METHODS: WHO resistance bioassays were conducted using 1-5d old adult Anopheles gambiae s.l. collected between 2011 and 2013 across the archipelago. Synergist assays with the P450 inhibitor piperonyl-butoxide were performed in 2013. Members of the An. gambiae complex were PCR-identified and screened for target-site mutations (kdr and Ace-1). Gene expression in pyrethroid resistant An. arabiensis from Pemba was analysed using whole-genome microarrays. RESULTS: Pyrethroid resistance is now present across the entire Zanzibar archipelago. Survival to the pyrethroid lambda-cyhalothrin in bioassays conducted in 2013 was 23.5-54.3% on Unguja and 32.9-81.7% on Pemba. We present evidence that resistance is mediated, in part at least, by elevated P450 monoxygenases. Whole-genome microarray scans showed that the most enriched gene terms in resistant An. arabiensis from Pemba were associated with P450 activity and synergist assays with PBO completely restored susceptibility to pyrethroids in both islands. CYP4G16 was the most consistently over-expressed gene in resistant mosquitoes compared with two susceptible strains from Unguja and Dar es Salaam. Expression of this P450 is enriched in the abdomen and it is thought to play a role in hydrocarbon synthesis. Microarray and qPCR detected several additional genes putatively involved in this pathway enriched in the Pemba pyrethroid resistant population and we hypothesise that resistance may be, in part, related to alterations in the structure of the mosquito cuticle. None of the kdr target-site mutations, associated with pyrethroid/DDT resistance in An. gambiae elsewhere in Africa, were found on the islands. CONCLUSION: The consequences of this resistance phenotype are discussed in relation to future vector control strategies on Zanzibar to support the ongoing malaria elimination efforts on the islands.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Lymphatic filariasis (LF) is targeted for elimination through annual mass drug administration (MDA) for 4-6 years. In 2006, Zanzibar stopped MDA against LF after five rounds of MDA revealed no microfilaraemic individuals during surveys at selected sentinel sites. We asked the question if LF transmission was truly interrupted in 2006 when MDA was stopped. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS:In line with ongoing efforts to shrink the LF map, we performed the WHO recommended transmission assessment surveys (TAS) in January 2012 to verify the absence of LF transmission on the main Zanzibar islands of Unguja and Pemba. Altogether, 3275 children were tested on both islands and 89 were found to be CFA positive; 70 in Pemba and 19 in Unguja. The distribution of schools with positive children was heterogeneous with pronounced spatial variation on both islands. Based on the calculated TAS cut-offs of 18 and 20 CFA positive children for Pemba and Unguja respectively, we demonstrated that transmission was still ongoing in Pemba where the cut-off was exceeded. CONCLUSIONS:Our findings indicated ongoing transmission of LF on Pemba in 2012. Moreover, we presented evidence from previous studies that LF transmission was also active on Unguja shortly after stopping MDA in 2006. Based on these observations the government of Zanzibar decided to resume MDA against LF on both islands in 2013.
Project description:The transcriptional profile of pyrethroid resistant Anopheles arabiensis from Zanzibar. Anopheles arabiensis from Pemba Island, exposed (Survivors) and non-exposed (Pemba) to a discriminating dose of the pyrethroid lambda-cyhalothrin were compared to two insecticide susceptible strains from Zanzibar island (Unguja) and Dar es Salaam (Dar).
Project description:Zanzibar has transitioned from malaria control to the pre-elimination phase, and the continued need for intermittent preventive treatment during pregnancy (IPTp) has been questioned. We conducted a prospective observational study to estimate placental malaria positivity rate among women who did not receive IPTp with sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine. A convenience sample of pregnant women was enrolled from six clinics on the day of delivery from August of 2011 to September of 2012. Dried placental blood spot specimens were analyzed by polymerase chain reaction (PCR); 9 of 1,349 specimens (0.7%; precision estimate = 0.2-1.1%) were PCR-positive for Plasmodium falciparum. Placental infection was detected on both Pemba (N = 3) and Unguja (N = 6). Placental malaria positivity in Zanzibar was low, even in the absence of IPTp. It may be reasonable for the Ministry of Health to consider discontinuing IPTp, intensifying surveillance efforts, and promoting insecticide-treated nets and effective case management of malaria in pregnancy.
Project description:We estimated the financial costs of different interventions against urogenital schistosomiasis, implemented by the Zanzibar Elimination of Schistosomiasis Transmission (ZEST) project, on Pemba and Unguja islands, Tanzania. We used available data on project activities, resources used, and costs reported in the accounting information systems of ZEST partners. The costs were estimated for all the activities related to snail control, behavior change interventions, the impact assessment surveys, and management of the whole program. Costs are presented in US$ for the full duration of the ZEST project from 2011/2012 to 2017. The total financial costs of implementing snail control activities over 5 years, excluding the costs for donated Bayluscide, were US$55,796 on Pemba and US$73,581 on Unguja, mainly driven by personnel costs. The total financial costs of implementing behavior change activities were US$109,165 on Pemba and US$155,828 on Unguja, with costs for personnel accounting for 47% on Pemba and 69% on Unguja. Costs of implementing biannual mass drug administration refer to the estimated 2.4 million treatments provided on Pemba over 4 years (2013-2016), and do not include the costs of donated praziquantel. The total cost per provided treatment was, on average, US$0.21. This study showed the value of exploiting administrative data to estimate costs of major global health interventions. It also provides an evidence base for financial costs and main cost drivers of implementing multiple combinations of intervention sets that inform decisions regarding the feasibility and affordability of implementing schistosomiasis control and elimination strategies.
Project description:Gaining and sustaining control of schistosomiasis and, whenever feasible, achieving local elimination are the year 2020 targets set by the World Health Organization. In Zanzibar, various institutions and stakeholders have joined forces to eliminate urogenital schistosomiasis within 5 years. We report baseline findings before the onset of a randomized intervention trial designed to assess the differential impact of community-based praziquantel administration, snail control, and behavior change interventions.In early 2012, a baseline parasitological survey was conducted in ~20,000 people from 90 communities in Unguja and Pemba. Risk factors for schistosomiasis were assessed by administering a questionnaire to adults. In selected communities, local knowledge about schistosomiasis transmission and prevention was determined in focus group discussions and in-depths interviews. Intermediate host snails were collected and examined for shedding of cercariae.The baseline Schistosoma haematobium prevalence in school children and adults was 4.3% (range: 0-19.7%) and 2.7% (range: 0-26.5%) in Unguja, and 8.9% (range: 0-31.8%) and 5.5% (range: 0-23.4%) in Pemba, respectively. Heavy infections were detected in 15.1% and 35.6% of the positive school children in Unguja and Pemba, respectively. Males were at higher risk than females (odds ratio (OR): 1.45; 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.03-2.03). Decreasing adult age (OR: 1.04; CI: 1.02-1.06), being born in Pemba (OR: 1.48; CI: 1.02-2.13) or Tanzania (OR: 2.36; CI: 1.16-4.78), and use of freshwater (OR: 2.15; CI: 1.53-3.03) showed higher odds of infection. Community knowledge about schistosomiasis was low. Only few infected Bulinus snails were found.The relatively low S. haematobium prevalence in Zanzibar is a promising starting point for elimination. However, there is a need to improve community knowledge about disease transmission and prevention. Control measures tailored to the local context, placing particular attention to hot-spot areas, high-risk groups, and individuals, will be necessary if elimination is to be achieved.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Zanzibar has a long history of lymphatic filariasis (LF) caused by the filarial parasite Wuchereria bancrofti, and transmitted by the mosquito Culex quinquefasciatus Say. The LF Programme in Zanzibar has successfully implemented mass drug administration (MDA) to interrupt transmission, and is now in the elimination phase. Monitoring infections in mosquitoes, and assessing the potential role of interventions such as vector control, is important in case the disease re-emerges as a public health problem. Here, we examine Culex mosquito species from the two main islands to detect W. bancrofti infection and to determine levels of susceptibility to the insecticides used for vector control. METHODS: Culex mosquitoes collected during routine catches in Vitongoji, Pemba Island, and Makadara, Unguja Island were tested for W. bancrofti infection using PCR. Insecticide bioassays on Culex mosquitoes were performed to determine susceptibility to permethrin, deltamethrin, lambda-cyhalothrin, DDT and bendiocarb. Additional synergism assays with piperonyl butoxide (PBO) were used for lambda-cyhalothrin. Pyrosequencing was used to determine the kdr genotype and sequencing of the mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase I (mtCOI) subunit performed to identify ambiguous Culex species. RESULTS: None of the wild-caught Culex mosquitoes analysed were found to be positive for W. bancrofti. High frequencies of resistance to all insecticides were found in Wete, Pemba Island, whereas Culex from the nearby site of Tibirinzi (Pemba) and in Kilimani, Unguja Island remained relatively susceptible. Species identification confirmed that mosquitoes from Wete were Culex quinquefasciatus. The majority of the Culex collected from Tibirinzi and all from Kilimani could not be identified to species by molecular assays. Two alternative kdr alleles, both resulting in a L1014F substitution were detected in Cx. quinquefasciatus from Wete with no homozygote susceptible detected. Metabolic resistance to pyrethroids was also implicated by PBO synergism assays. CONCLUSIONS: Results from the xenomonitoring are encouraging for the LF programme in Zanzibar. However, the high levels of pyrethroid resistance found in the principle LF vector in Pemba Island will need to be taken into consideration if vector control is to be implemented as part of the elimination programme.
Project description:BACKGROUND:The Zanzibar Elimination of Schistosomiasis Transmission (ZEST) project aimed to eliminate urogenital schistosomiasis as a public health problem from Pemba and to interrupt Schistosoma haematobium transmission from Unguja in 5 years. METHODOLOGY:A repeated cross-sectional cluster-randomized trial was implemented from 2011/12 till 2017. On each island, 45 shehias were randomly assigned to receive one of three interventions: biannual mass drug administration (MDA) with praziquantel alone, or in combination with snail control or behavior change measures. In cross-sectional surveys, a single urine sample was collected from ~9,000 students aged 9- to 12-years and from ~4,500 adults aged 20- to 55-years annually, and from ~9,000 1st year students at baseline and the final survey. Each sample was examined for S. haematobium eggs by a single urine filtration. Prevalence and infection intensity were determined. Odds of infection were compared between the intervention arms. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS:Prevalence was reduced from 6.1% (95% confidence interval (CI): 4.5%-7.6%) to 1.7% (95% CI: 1.2%-2.2%) in 9- to 12-year old students, from 3.9% (95% CI: 2.8%-5.0%) to 1.5% (95% CI: 1.0%-2.0%) in adults, and from 8.8% (95% CI: 6.5%-11.2%) to 2.6% (95% CI: 1.7%-3.5%) in 1st year students from 2011/12 to 2017. In 2017, heavy infection intensities occurred in 0.4% of 9- to 12-year old students, 0.1% of adults, and 0.8% of 1st year students. Considering 1st year students in 2017, 13/45 schools in Pemba and 4/45 schools in Unguja had heavy infection intensities >1%. There was no significant difference in prevalence between the intervention arms in any study group and year. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE:Urogenital schistosomiasis was eliminated as public health problem from most sites in Pemba and Unguja. Prevalence was significantly reduced, but transmission was not interrupted. Continued interventions that are adaptive and tailored to the micro-epidemiology of S. haematobium in Zanzibar are needed to sustain and advance the gains made by ZEST.
Project description:Case investigation and reactive case detection (RACD) activities are widely-used in low transmission settings to determine the suspected origin of infection and identify and treat malaria infections nearby to the index patient household. Case investigation and RACD activities are time and resource intensive, include methodologies that vary across eliminating settings, and have no standardized metrics or tools available to monitor and evaluate them.In response to this gap, a simple programme tool was developed for monitoring and evaluating (M&E) RACD activities and piloted by national malaria programmes. During the development phase, four modules of the RACD M&E tool were created to assess and evaluate key case investigation and RACD activities and costs. A pilot phase was then carried out by programme implementers between 2013 and 2015, during which malaria surveillance teams in three different settings (China, Indonesia, Thailand) piloted the tool over a period of 3 months each. This study describes summary results of the pilots and feasibility and impact of the tool on programmes.All three study areas implemented the RACD M&E tool modules, and pilot users reported the tool and evaluation process were helpful to identify gaps in RACD programme activities. In the 45 health facilities evaluated, 71.8% (97/135; min 35.3-max 100.0%) of the proper notification and reporting forms and 20.0% (27/135; min 0.0-max 100.0%) of standard operating procedures (SOPs) were available to support malaria elimination activities. The tool highlighted gaps in reporting key data indicators on the completeness for malaria case reporting (98.8%; min 93.3-max 100.0%), case investigations (65.6%; min 61.8-max 78.4%) and RACD activities (70.0%; min 64.7-max 100.0%). Evaluation of the SOPs showed that knowledge and practices of malaria personnel varied within and between study areas. Average monthly costs for conducting case investigation and RACD activities showed variation between study areas (min USD $844.80-max USD $2038.00) for the malaria personnel, commodities, services and other costs required to carry out the activities.The RACD M&E tool was implemented in the three pilot areas, identifying key gaps that led to impacts on programme decision making. Study findings support the need for routine M&E of malaria case reporting, case investigation and RACD activities. Scale-up of the RACD M&E tool in malaria-eliminating settings will contribute to improved programme performance to the high level that is required to reach elimination.