In areas approaching malaria elimination, human mobility patterns are important in determining the proportion of malaria cases that are imported or the result of low-level, endemic transmission. A convenience sample of participants enrolled in a longitudinal cohort study in the catchment area of Macha Hospital in Choma District, Southern Province, Zambia, was selected to carry a GPS data logger for one month from October 2013 to August 2014. Density maps and activity space plots were created to evaluate seasonal movement patterns. Time spent outside the household compound during anopheline biting times, and time spent in malaria high- and low-risk areas, were calculated.
Reactive case detection strategies, in which individuals with clinical malaria are followed up at their home and household residents and neighbours are screened and treated for malaria, are increasingly used as part of malaria elimination programmes. With limited resources, coverage and diagnostic tools, reactive screen-and-treat will likely not be sufficient to achieve malaria elimination in this setting. However, high coverage with reactive focal drug administration could be efficient at decreasing the reservoir of infection and should be considered as an alternative strategy.
Author: Bridges DJ, Hamapumbu H, Kobayashi T, Larsen DA, Lubinda J, Moss WJ, Pinchoff J, Searle KM, Shields TM, Southern Africa International Centers of Excellence for Malaria Research, Stevenson JC, Thuma PE
Publication date: August 2016
Source: Malaria Journal