Infectious Diseases

Strengthening Tactical Planning and Operational Frameworks for Vector Control: The Roadmap for Malaria Elimination in Namibia

Namibia has made tremendous gains in malaria control and the epidemiological trend of the disease has changed significantly over the past years. In 2010, the country reoriented from the objective of reducing disease mor bidity and mortality to the goal of achieving malaria elimination by 2020. This manuscript outlines the processes undertaken in strengthening tactical planning and operational frameworks for vector control to facilitate expeditious malaria elimination in Namibia. [from abstract]

The Role of Institutions on the Effectiveness of Malaria Treatment in the Ghanaian Health Sector

The objective of this study is to find the effect of institutional factors on the quality of care. The institutional factors examined were mainly the extent of decentralization between government and health facilities, as well as between health workers and facility administration, the hiring procedure, and job satisfaction. [from abstract]

Utilization of Community Health Workers for Malaria Treatment: Results from a Three-Year Panel Study in the Districts of Kaya and Zorgho, Burkina Faso

Malaria is holo-endemic in Burkina Faso and causes approximately 40,000 deaths every year. In 2010, health authorities scaled up community case management of malaria with artemisinin-based combination therapy. Previous trials and pilot project evaluations have shown that this strategy may be feasible, acceptable, and effective under controlled implementation conditions. However, little is known about its effectiveness or feasibility/acceptability under real-world conditions of implementation at national scale. [from abstract]

Do Community Health Workers Perceive Mechanisms Associated with the Success of Community Case Management of Malaria? A Qualitative Study From Burkina Faso

The use of community health workers to administer prompt treatments is gaining popularity in most sub-Saharan African countries. Their performance is a key challenge because it varies considerably, depending on the context, while being closely associated with the effectiveness of case management strategies. What determines community health workers’ performance is still under debate. Based on a realist perspective, a systematic review recently hypothesized that several mechanisms are associated with good performance and successful community interventions.

Public Health in the Age of Ebola in West Africa

The world is witnessing the unprecedented unfolding of the West African Ebola epidemic. The epidemic could have major ramifications for global public health in ways that no other modern infectious disease has, perhaps including AIDS, and can be viewed as a “Black Swan” event. What we call here a Black Swan (and capitalize it) is an event with the following three attributes. First, it is an outlier, as it lies outside the realm of regular expecta- tions, because nothing in the past can convincingly point to its possibility.

The Quality of Tuberculosis Services in Health Care Centres in a Rural District in Uganda: The Providers’ and Clients’ Perspective

Quality of care plays an important role in the status of tuberculosis (TB) control, by influencing timely diagnosis, treatment adherence,and treatment completion. In this study,we aimed at establishing the quality of TB service care in Kamuli district health care centres using Donabedian structure, process, and outcomes model of health care. One of the worst performance indicators was low percentage of cure.

“Nothing For Us Without Us”: Establishing a Tuberculosis-Free Africa Through Community Action

African community activists have long recognized the need to strengthen the voices of African advocates and civil
society working to improve health and wellbeing across the continent. With funding from the United States Agency for
International Development (USAID), PATH helped former tuberculosis (TB) patients from five African countries to
build on the previous efforts of their colleagues to create a strong core organization—the Africa Coalition on
Tuberculosis (ACT!)—and then expand ACT!

Balancing Authority, Deference and Trust Across the Public–Private Divide in Health Care: Tuberculosis Health Visitors in Western Maharashtra, India

While concepts such as ‘partnership’ are central to the terminology of private–public mix (PPM), little attention has been paid to how social relations are negotiated among the diverse actors responsible for implementing these inter-sectoral arrangements. India’s Revised National Tuberculosis Control Programme (RNTCP) has used intermediary agents to facilitate the involvement of private providers in the expansion of Directly Observed Therapy, Short-Course (DOTS).

Health Seeking Behavior, Practices of TB and Access to Health Care Among TB Patients in Machakos County, Kenya. A Cross-Sectional Study

The main objective of this study was to examine the health seeking behavior of TB patients, practices of TB and access to health care. A cross- sectional survey of TB patients was done in Athi River, Machakos level 5 and Mutituni TB treatment health facilities in Machakos County. [from abstract]

Advocating for Malaria Elimination - Learning from the Successes of Other Infectious Disease Elimination Programmes

The global malaria community needs to work together, to ensure that the early steps towards the end goal of malaria elimination are taken.

Perceptions and Acceptability of Short Message Services Technology to Improve Treatment Adherence amongst Tuberculosis Patients in Peru: A Focus Group Study

In this study, we sought to investigate perceptions related to feasibility and acceptability of using text messaging to improve treatment adherence among adults who were receiving treatment for TB in Callao, Peru. [from abstract]

Improving Malaria Knowledge and Practices in Rural Myanmar Through a Village Health Worker Intervention: A Cross-Sectional Study

The purpose of this paper is to compare the malaria knowledge level and health practices of individuals in SPH intervention areas to individuals without SPH intervention [from abstract]

Cross Sectional Study of Knowledge and Attitudes Towards Tuberculosis among Front-Line Tuberculosis Personnel in High Burden Areas of Lima, Peru

This study analyzed mean knowledge scores among health workers in 66 health centers in Peru to identify overall gaps in key areas of tuberculosis (TB) treatment and control knowledge, and attitudes towards the disease and the national TB control program. [adapted from abstract]

Tuberculosis in Healthcare Workers and Infection Control Measures at Primary Healthcare Facilities in South Africa

This study’s objectives were to investigate the implementation of tuberculosis (TB) infection control measures at primary healthcare facilities, the smear positive TB incidence rate amongst primary healthcare workers and the association between TB infection control measures and all types of TB in healthcare workers. [from abstract]

Beyond Antimalarial Stock-Outs: Implications of Health Provider Compliance on Out-of-Pocket

This article evaluated how stock-outs of the first line antimalarial, medication and non-compliant health worker behavior influence household expenditures during care-seeking for fever in the Ulanga District in Tanzania.

Factors Associated to Referral of Tuberculosis Suspects by Private Practitioners to Community Health Centers in Bali Province, Indonesia

The contrast between the low proportion of tuberculosis (TB) suspects referred from private practitioners in Bali province and the high volume of TB suspects seeking care at private practices suggests problems with TB suspect referral from private practitioners to the public health sector. This study aimed to identify key factors associated with the referral of TB suspects by private practitioners. [from abstract]

How Well Can Physicians Manage Tuberculosis? A Public-Private Sector Comparison from Karachi, Pakistan

This study endeavored to identify the gap in knowledge regarding the diagnosis and management of tuberculosis between public and private doctors and the factors affecting these knowledge scores in urban Pakistan. [adapted from abstract]

House Calls by Community Health Workers and Public Health Nurses to Improve Adherence to Isoniazid Montotherapy for Latent Tuberculosis Infection: A Retrospective Study

The goal of this study was to assess whether house calls by community health workers and public health nurses affected isoniazid adherence for latent tuberculosis infection or frequency of adverse effects. [adapted from author]

Use of Community Health Workers for Management of Malaria and Pneumonia in Urban and Rural Areas in Eastern Uganda

This study assessed the potential differences between urban and rural areas in the implementation of community case management is implemented for malaria and pneumonia and how community health workers are being used alongside other partners in health care provision. [adapted from introduction]

Role of AFB Microscopy Training in Improving the Performance of Laboratory Professionals: Analysis of Pre and Post Training Evaluation Scores

The objective of this study was to investigate the role of AFB microscopy refresher training on the performance of tuberculosis laboratory professionals in Ethiopia. [adapted from author]

Final Push for Polio Eradication: Addressing the Challenge of Violence in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Nigeria

The authors explore the different contexts of violence against polio vaccination workers and make policy proposals on how to respond to attacks on vaccination workers and to other factors that are impeding the final push for polio eradication. [adapted from author]

Why We Must Provide Better Support for Pakistan's Female Frontline Health Workers

This article summarizes the key role that lady health workers play in polio eradication; outlines the problems faced by these workers such as the risk to their lives through shootings and bombings, the lack of a living wage and dearth of advancement opportunities; and offers suggestions to improve the situation.

Evaluation of the Global Network of Field Epidemiology and Laboratory Training Programmes: A Resource for Improving Health Capacity and Increasing the Number of Public Health Professionals Worldwide

This study surveyed field epidemiology training program that are members of the a globally applied epidemiology network to determine progress toward increasing public health capacity for health professionals trained in controlling infectious epidemics globally. [adapted from author]

Health Worker Factors Associated with Prescribing of Artemisinin Combination Therapy for Uncomplicated Malaria in Rural Tanzania

Improving malaria case management is partially dependent on health worker compliance with clinical guidelines. This study assessed health worker factors associated with correct anti-malarial prescribing practices at two sites in rural Tanzania. [from abstract]

Infection Prevention and Control: Training Curriculum for Healthcare Workers

Providing education and training to healthcare staff is an important strategy in implementing a tuberculosis infection prevention program. This manual and training curriculum provide information to begin improving infection prevention practices in health facilities and home based care. [adapted from publisher]

National Guidelines for Tuberculosis Infection Control

This guideline emphasises measures that reduce the risk of transmitting tuberculosis (TB) to managers, health care workers, patients, visitors and other persons in the health care facilities and households. It focuses on the safety of health care workers and reduction of patient-to-patient transmission. [adapted from author]

Development of TB Occupational Safety Framework

This report provides a draft framework which outlines action steps a country may take in formulating tuberculosis (TB) occupational safety strategies to encompass the needs of prevention and treatment of TB disease among health care workers. [adapted from summary]

Community-Based Care for Drug-Resistant Tuberculosis: A Guide for Implementers

Effectively scaling up treatment of drug-resistant tuberculosis (DR TB) will require addressing health systems–related issues, such as task shifting to alleviate human resources shortages and greater community engagement. This guide provides practical, step-by-step guidance on how to organize, implement, and monitor community-based care for DR TB. [adapted from introduction]

Assessment of Provider Adherence to TB Evidence-based Standards and Guidelines in Bangladesh

The study assessed provider adherence to tuberculosis (TB) guidelines on national, regional/district, and facility-based levels in Bangladesh. [adapted from author]

Assessment of Provider Adherence to TB Evidence-based Standards and Guidelines in Zambia

This study was undertaken as part of a multi-country study to determine providers’ adherence with evidence based tuberculosis (TB) standards and guidelines. This particular study assesses adherence with TB guidelines in Zambia at national, provincial/district and facility-based levels. [adapted from summary]