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Lancet Infect Dis. 2017 Feb;17(2):e64-e69. doi: 10.1016/S1473-3099(16)30535-7. Epub 2016 Nov 30.

A call to strengthen the global strategy against schistosomiasis and soil-transmitted helminthiasis: the time is now.

Author information

1
Division of Infectious Diseases and Geographic Medicine, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, CA, USA; Division of Epidemiology, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, CA, USA. Electronic address: nathan.lo@stanford.edu.
2
Children Without Worms, Task Force for Global Health, Decatur, GA, USA.
3
Sabin Vaccine Institute and Texas Children's Hospital Center for Vaccine Development, National School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX, USA; Department of Biology, Baylor University, Waco, TX, USA; James A Baker III Institute for Public Policy, Rice University, Houston, TX, USA.
4
Center for Global Health and Diseases, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH, USA.
5
Department of Parasitology, Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, Liverpool, UK.
6
United States Agency for International Development, Global Health, Washington, DC, USA.
7
Center for Tropical and Emerging Global Diseases and the Department of Microbiology, University of Georgia, Athens, GA, USA.
8
Global Public Health, Johnson & Johnson, New Brunswick, NJ, USA.
9
Unité de Formation et de Recherche Biosciences, Université Félix Houphouët-Boigny, Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire; Centre Suisse de Recherches Scientifiques en Côte d'Ivoire, Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire; Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute, Basel, Switzerland; University of Basel, Basel, Switzerland.
10
Clinical Research Department, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, London, UK.
11
Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute, Basel, Switzerland; University of Basel, Basel, Switzerland.
12
Division of General Medical Disciplines, Stanford University, Stanford, CA, USA; Center for Health Policy and the Center for Primary Care and Outcomes Research, Stanford University, Stanford, CA, USA.
13
Department of Medicine, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada; Division of Internal Medicine and Infectious Diseases, Toronto General Hospital, University Health Network, Toronto, ON, Canada.
14
Schistosomiasis Control Initiative, Imperial College London, London, UK.
15
Global Schistosomiasis Alliance, Chavannes de Bogis, Switzerland.
16
Division of Infectious Diseases and Geographic Medicine, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, CA, USA.

Abstract

In 2001, the World Health Assembly (WHA) passed the landmark WHA 54.19 resolution for global scale-up of mass administration of anthelmintic drugs for morbidity control of schistosomiasis and soil-transmitted helminthiasis, which affect more than 1·5 billion of the world's poorest people. Since then, more than a decade of research and experience has yielded crucial knowledge on the control and elimination of these helminthiases. However, the global strategy has remained largely unchanged since the original 2001 WHA resolution and associated WHO guidelines on preventive chemotherapy. In this Personal View, we highlight recent advances that, taken together, support a call to revise the global strategy and guidelines for preventive chemotherapy and complementary interventions against schistosomiasis and soil-transmitted helminthiasis. These advances include the development of guidance that is specific to goals of morbidity control and elimination of transmission. We quantify the result of forgoing this opportunity by computing the yearly disease burden, mortality, and lost economic productivity associated with maintaining the status quo. Without change, we estimate that the population of sub-Saharan Africa will probably lose 2·3 million disability-adjusted life-years and US$3·5 billion of economic productivity every year, which is comparable to recent acute epidemics, including the 2014 Ebola and 2015 Zika epidemics. We propose that the time is now to strengthen the global strategy to address the substantial disease burden of schistosomiasis and soil-transmitted helminthiasis.

PMID:
27914852
PMCID:
PMC5280090
DOI:
10.1016/S1473-3099(16)30535-7
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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