Child mortality and malaria transmission intensity in Africa
The desirability of controlling malaria transmission in the areas of highest endemicity of Plasmodium falciparum has long been debated. Most recently, it has been claimed that rates of malaria morbidity are no higher in areas of very high transmission in Africa than they are in places with lower inoculation rates. We now review the literature on the relationship of morbidity and mortality to malaria transmission intensity, and have linked published child mortality and malaria transmission rates to examine how age-specific mortality actually varies with the inoculation rate of P. falciparum.
[Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In accordance with international targets, the Uganda National Malaria Control Strategic Plan established specific targets to be achieved by 2010. For children under five, this included increasing the number of children sleeping under mosquito nets and those receiving a first-line antimalarial to 85%, and decreasing case fatality to 2%. This narrative review offers contextual information relevant to malaria management in Uganda since the advent of artemisinin combination therapy (ACT) as first-line antimalarial treatment in 2004. A comprehensive search using key words and phrases was conducted using the web search engines Google and Google Scholar, as well as the databases of PubMed, ERIC, EMBASE, CINAHL, OvidSP (MEDLINE), PSYC Info, Springer Link, Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL), and Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews were searched. A total of 147 relevant international and Ugandan literature sources meeting the inclusion criteria were included. This review provides an insightful understanding on six topic areas: global and local priorities, malarial pathology, disease burden, malaria control, treatment guidelines for uncomplicated malaria, and role of the health system in accessing antimalarial medicines. Plasmodium falciparum remains the most common cause of malaria in Uganda, with children under five being most vulnerable due to their underdeveloped immunity. While international efforts to scale up malaria control measures have resulted in considerable decline in malaria incidence and mortality in several regions of sub-Saharan Africa, this benefit has yet to be substantiated for Uganda. At the local level, key initiatives have included implementation of a new antimalarial drug policy in 2004 and strengthening of government health systems and programs. Examples of such programs include removal of user fees, training of frontline health workers, providing free ACT from government systems and subsidized ACT from licensed private outlets, and introduction of the integrated community case management program to bring diagnostics and treatment for malaria, pneumonia and diarrhea closer to the community. However despite notable efforts, Uganda is far from achieving its 2010 targets. Several challenges in the delivery of care and treatment remain, with those most vulnerable and living in rural settings remaining at greatest risk from malaria morbidity and mortality. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier B.V.0Comments 1Citation
- "While there is a lack of consensus among experts concerning the best approach to measure malaria transmission, the entomological inoculation rate (EIR) – which estimates the number of bites by infectious mosquitoes per person per unit time (usually per year), remains the best direct measure of transmission intensity than indirect measures such as incidence, prevalence, or other traditional epidemiological estimates (Birley and Charlewood, 1987). Furthermore, the incidence of clinical malaria and mortality in children has been shown to increase with increase in EIR (Smith et al., 1998Smith et al., , 2001). Uganda is cited as one of the top four countries accounting for the majority of the world's malaria infections after Nigeria, India, and Democratic Republic of the Congo, with malaria contributing to the major share of the disease burden (The Roll Back Malaria Partnership, 2008b; World Health Organization (WHO), 2013). "
[Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background Malaria is a major public health problem in sub-Saharan African countries including Ethiopia. Early and accurate diagnosis followed by prompt and effective treatment is among the various tools available for prevention, control and elimination of malaria. This study aimed to evaluate the performance of non-instrumented nucleic acid amplification loop-mediated isothermal amplification (NINA-LAMP) compared to standard thick and thin film microscopy and nested PCR as gold standard for the sensitive diagnosis of malaria in Northwest Ethiopia.MethodsA cross-sectional study was conducted in North Gondar, Ethiopia from March to July 2014. Eighty-two blood samples were collected from malaria suspected patients visiting Kola Diba Health Centre and analysed for Plasmodium parasites by microscopy, NINA-LAMP and nested PCR. The NINA-LAMP method was performed using the LoopampTM Malaria Pan/Pf detection kits for detecting DNA of the genus Plasmodium and more specifically Plasmodium falciparum using an electricity-free heater. Diagnostic accuracy outcome measures (analytical sensitivity, specificity, predictive values, and Kappa scores) of NINA-LAMP and microscopy were compared to nested PCR.ResultsA total of 82 samples were tested in the primary analysis. Using nested PCR as reference, the sensitivity and specificity of the primary NINA-LAMP assay were 96.8% (95% confidence interval (CI), 83.2% -99.5%) and 84.3% (95% CI, 71.4%-92.9%), respectively for detection of Plasmodium genus, and 100% (95% CI, 75.1%- 100%) and 81.2% (95% CI, 69.9%-89.6%), respectively for detection of P. falciparum parasite. Microscopy demonstrated sensitivity and specificity of 93.6% (95% CI, 78.5%- 99.0%) and 98.0% (95% CI, 89.5% - 99.7%), respectively for the detection of Plasmodium parasites. Post-hoc repeat NINA-LAMP analysis showed improvement in diagnostic accuracy, which was comparable to nested PCR performance and superior to microscopy for detection at both the Plasmodium genus level and P. falciparum parasites.ConclusionNINA-LAMP is highly sensitive for the diagnosis of malaria and detection of Plasmodium parasite infection at both the genus and species level when compared to nested PCR. NINA-LAMP is more sensitive than microscopy for the detection of P. falciparum and differentiation from non-falciparum species and may be a critical diagnostic modality in efforts to eradicate malaria from areas of low endemicity.0Comments 8Citations
- "Although the incidence and malaria specific mortality rate is declining worldwide due to concerted global malaria control efforts , malaria remains a major public health issue in sub-Saharan African countries with occasional epidemics leading to significant mortality. Children less than five years of age and pregnant mothers bear the greatest burden of illness234. Malaria contributes to 12% of outpatient consultations and 10% hospital admissions in Ethiopia [5,6]. "
[Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The precise nature of the relationship between malaria mortality and levels of transmission is unclear. Due to methodological limitations, earlier efforts to assess the linkage have lead to inconclusive results. The malaria transmission intensity and mortality burden across Africa (MTIMBA) project initiated by the INDEPTH Network collected longitudinally entomological data within a number of sites in sub-Saharan Africa to study this relationship. This work linked the MTIMBA entomology database with the routinely collected vital events within the Rufiji Demographic Surveillance System to analyse the transmission-mortality relation in the region. Bayesian Bernoulli spatio-temporal Cox proportional hazards models with village clustering, adjusted for age and insecticide-treated nets (ITNs), were fitted to assess the relation between mortality and malaria transmission measured by entomology inoculation rate (EIR). EIR was predicted at household locations using transmission models and it was incorporated in the model as a covariate with measure of uncertainty. Effects of covariates estimated by the model are reported as hazard ratios (HR) with 95% Bayesian confidence interval (BCI) and spatial and temporal parameters are presented. Separate analysis was carried out for neonates, infants and children 1-4 years of age. No significant relation between all-cause mortality and intensity of malaria transmission was indicated at any age in childhood. However, a strong age effect was shown. Comparing effects of ITN and EIR on mortality at different age categories, a decrease in protective efficacy of ITN was observed (i.e. neonates: HR = 0.65; 95% BCI: 0.39-1.05; infants: HR = 0.72; 95% BCI:0.48-1.07; children 1-4 years: HR = 0.88; 95% BCI: 0.62-1.23) and reduction on the effect of malaria transmission exposure was detected (i.e. neonates: HR = 1.15; 95% BCI:0.95-1.36; infants: HR = 1.13; 95% BCI:0.98-1.25; children 1-4 years: HR = 1.04; 95% BCI:0.89-1.18). A very strong spatial correlation was also observed. These results imply that assessing the malaria transmission-mortality relation involves more than the knowledge on the performance of interventions and control measures. This relation depends on the levels of malaria endemicity and transmission intensity, which varies significantly between different settings. Thus, sub-regions analyses are necessary to validate and assess reproducibility of findings.0Comments 3Citations
- "The missing data that could not be used for analysis due to lack of household-specific geographical coordinates might cost interpretation on the linkage between malaria transmission and child mortality, however, results from bivariate models which were fitted at different stages of data merging process showed similar pattern of the transmission-mortality relationship. This study relates vital events to the closest measure of malaria exposure than previous approaches [20,22,68], however a few limitations accompanied the analysis. First, spatial effects were determined at the village level rather than location based. "