Monthly Archives: June 2020

All Hands on Deck: A synchronized approach to fighting COVID-19

In a new paper published in the International Journal of Infectious Diseases, Rubina Imtiaz, MBBS, CWW Director, and other global public health experts called for a unified response to the coronavirus pandemic. Calling it an ‘all-hands-on-deck’ approach, the experts proposed a list of tools and institutional mechanisms to advance the unified approach. The publication drew on experiences from previous epidemic outbreaks like the Ebola outbreaks and the successes of multilateral platforms like the NTD Supply Chain Forum, facilitated by CWW, to form a global, COVID-19 mitigation framework with tools for a collaborative pandemic response. Reflecting on the role of institutions, the authors offered the following example:

“[T]he Task Force for Global Health convened a virtual meeting across 46 global entities representing pharmaceutical commodity donors, implementing partners and shippers, under WHO leadership to assess and respond to anticipated interruptions in critical supply chain of deworming drugs. This rapid consultation across multilaterals and private sector entities helped rapidly access existing platforms such as the DHL Control Tower for Humanitarian Supply Chain to assist the movement of medical supplies and other essential drugs from China to the rest of the world.” (Ebrahim, Zhou, et al. 2020).

Dr. Imtiaz added that “examples like the NTD Supply Chain Forum, facilitated by CWW, show us the importance of a multilateral approach in mitigating global, public health crises by helping to rapidly adapt existing and new platforms and mechanisms for a response. During a global crisis like COVID-19, our response should not be the sole responsibility of one sector, but the responsibility of all sectors to work together.”

CWW has also been working with partners to assess delays to deworming, and other NTD campaigns. CWW is supporting national deworming programs to focus on those activities that can continue during the pandemic per WHO interim guidelines on community- and facility-based care.

Reference:

Ebrahim, S. H., Zhuo, J., Gozzer, E., Ahmed, Q. A., Imtiaz, R., Ahmed, Y., Doumbia, S., Rahman, N., Elachola, H., Wilder-Smith, A., & Memish, Z. A. (2020). All Hands on Deck: A Synchronized Whole-of-World Approach for COVID-19 Mitigation. International journal of infectious diseases : IJID : official publication of the International Society for Infectious Diseases, S1201-9712(20)30484-7. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijid.2020.06.049

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All Hands on Deck: A Synchronized Whole-of-World Approach for COVID-19 Mitigation

Shahul H Ebrahim, MD, PhD, Jiatong Zhuo MD, MSc, Ernesto Gozzer MD, MSc, Qanta A. Ahmed MD, FCCP, Rubina Imtiaz MD, et al. (2020). All Hands on Deck: A Synchronized Whole-of-World Approach for COVID-19 Mitigation. International Journal of Infectious Diseases.

 

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Announcing the Launch of CWW’s New Website

CWW is excited to announce the launch of our newly designed website!

As a leader in STH policy, innovation, and advocacy, CWW needs to make news and resources about global STH control and elimination efforts easily accessible to current and new partners and colleagues. We believe our new website does just that – the new site is more user-friendly, faster, and easier to navigate. It provides better access to information on the STH Advisory Committee and STH resources produced by CWW.

New features on our website include an image gallery via Flickr that provides quick access to photos related to CWW’s work around the world. Our social media channel on Twitter is now integrated onto our homepage so visitors can view our engagement on social media.

A featured resources section on the home page provides visitors easy access to our latest resources. These resources include tools to estimate disease prevalence, such as the Integrated Community-Based Survey for Program Monitoring, and the Global M&E Framework, a resource document for deworming programs to make data-driven decisions on deworming interventions.

The new website also features our STH Advisory Committee members. The STH Advisory Committee is an expert group of research and national program leaders with expertise in public health, diagnostics, epidemiology, child, and school health. The STH Advisory Committee comes together once a year at an annual meeting to assess global accomplishments and persistent needs and gaps towards the WHO STH goals. The committee provides relevant technical and scientific advice on STH control to donors, researchers, pharmaceutical companies, and non-governmental and governmental implementers.

We expect to add new content regularly to our new website, so we encourage STH and NTD partners to bookmark our pages.

Many thanks to Resonance Marketing for building the new site for CWW!

For any questions, suggestions, feedback, or comments, please email us at cww@taskforce.org.

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Global Monitoring and Evaluation Framework

The Global M&E Framework, developed in collaboration with the STH Coalition and supporting partners, provides an overview of existing M&E tools and guidelines from WHO and other implementing partners. It provides innovative guidance to countries by acknowledging their differing stages of program implementation, defines a standardized approach to measuring key indicators by program tier, and introduces a tiered set of categories for benchmarking and assessing country progress and capacity towards achieving STH control goals. Please note that this is a living document and will be updated as and when new data and guidelines emerge.

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ICSPM Reference Manual

This manual describes how to conduct an Integrated Community-based Survey for Program Monitoring (ICSPM). The ICSPM is a probability household survey that measures prevalence of any STH infection and of medium and high intensity infections simultaneously in each risk group. It enables STH Programs to assess program impact and progress toward the elimination goal, and determine what the frequency of STH preventive chemotherapy should be, which depends on the prevalence range of any-STH infection. The manual is for national STH control program managers and survey coordinators at the implementation unit, sub-national, and national levels.

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CWW Factsheet

The CWW fact sheet provides an overview of CWW’s vision, mission, and strategies.

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Dr. Theresa Gyorkos

Dr. Theresa Gyorkos is a Canadian-based researcher in global health and infectious (parasite) disease epidemiology. She has over 25 years of experience conducting population-based primary epidemiological field research in Canada and abroad. Her research interests center around deworming control programs for high-risk populations such as those living in extreme poverty in parasitic disease-endemic areas of low- and middle-income countries, malnourished children, and pregnant women.

Dr. Gyorkos is currently a professor at McGill University’s Infectious Diseases and Immunity in Global Health Program.

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Ascaris

Ascaris lumbricoides, or “roundworm”

Roundworm is most prevalent in regions with hot, humid climates and inadequate sanitation. The parasite primarily affects children ages 1-14. The worms live in the intestines, and the eggs are passed through the feces of an infected person and contaminate the soil. They are transmitted by ingestion of the eggs on unwashed fruits and vegetables, utensils, or dirty hands that have been exposed to feces-contaminated soil. The health effects range from mild abdominal discomfort to severe infections that can lead to bowel obstruction, rupture, and death. Malnutrition can develop among those infected with intestinal worms. Children with these infections may also have mental and physical growth impairments. Roundworm infections are preventable and treatable with prescribed medication.

CDC – Ascariasis. US Centers for Disease Control & Prevention. 2020.

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Dr. Ajay Khera

Dr. Ajay Khera is Commissioner at the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare Government of India. He is responsible for planning, implementing, and monitoring child health immunization-related interventions at the national level. Prior to his current position, he served as the Assistant Director General at the National AIDS Control Organization, where he monitored and evaluated integrated disease surveillance programs. He also served as the Joint Director of Epidemiology at the National Center of Disease Control.

Dr. Khera has a Doctor of Medicine degree, specializing in preventive and social medicine from Lady Hardinge Medicine College and holds a Diploma in Gynecology and Obstetrics and Bachelor’s in Medicine and Surgery from Maulana Azad Medical College.

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Hookworm

Ancylostoma duodenale (“Old World” hookworm) and Necator americanus (“New World” hookworm)

Hookworm infection is most often acquired by walking barefoot on feces-contaminated soil. Some hookworm infections can occur in the lining of the mouth.The parasite primarily infects and affects adults (>15 years old). Although women of reproductive age are infected at similar rates as men, they are particularly affected by hookworm. Mild infections usually produce no symptoms but are still associated with lower hemoglobin concentration. [1] Severe infections result in blood loss, anemia, and protein loss. [2] Malnutrition can develop among those infected with intestinal worms. Children with these infections may also have mental and physical growth impairments. In addition to causing the majority of STH-associated deaths, hookworm caused an estimated 3.2 million disability-adjusted life years (DALY) in 2010. This represents the estimated number of years lost to ill health, disability, or early death caused by hookworm infections. Hookworm is responsible by for the most DALYs, by far, caused by a STH species. [2] Hookworm infections are preventable and treatable with prescribed medication.

CDC – Hookworm. Cdcgov. 2020.

[1] – Pullan R, Smith J, Jasrasaria R, Brooker S. Global numbers of infection and disease burden of soil transmitted helminth infections in 2010. Parasites & Vectors. 2014;7(1):37. doi:10.1186/1756-3305-7-37.[2] – Gyorkos, T. W., Gilbert, N. L., Larocque, R. and Casapía, M. (2011), Trichuris and hookworm infections associated with anaemia during pregnancy. Tropical Medicine & International Health, 16: 531–537. doi:10.1111/j.1365-3156.2011.02727.x

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Mariana Stephens, MPH

As Deputy Director, Mariana provides strategic leadership and technical direction for the CWW program. Mariana is responsible for overall management, implementation, personnel budget, and financial oversight of the program. Before joining the CWW team, Mariana worked with the NTD Support Center (NTD-SC) providing strategic planning and directed the development and implementation of complex, multi-institutional operational research programs. Her focus was on targeting the special challenges of national NTD programs supported by USAID and providing a rapid research response to these programs. Mariana is also an active member of the Center for Global Safe Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (CGSW) at Emory University. The mission of the CGSW is to enable organizations and communities to provide safe, effective, and sustainable drinking water and effective and sustainable sanitation and hygiene improvements.

Prior to joining the NTD-SC, Mariana has worked with CARE, World Vision International, and Habitat for Humanity International in various technical areas focused on WASH, maternal and child health, food security and nutrition, embracing program design, and monitoring and evaluation. She began her career in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Mali serving as a Peace Corps Volunteer in the late 1980s. Mariana holds a master’s degree in public health and a bachelor’s degree in environmental design.

 

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Dr. Alejandro Krolewiecki

Dr. Alejandro Krolewiecki is the National Director for Diseases and Risk Prevention in Argentina’s Ministry of Health. He also works as a researcher at the Tropical Diseases Research Institute at the National University of Salta, Argentina. Previously, Dr. Krolewiecki served as the Director of Clinical Research at Guest Foundation, a Buenos Aires-based public health organization that has been working to secure rights to health since 1989.

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Whipworm

Trichuris trichiura, or “whipworm”

Whipworms are most prevalent in regions with hot, humid climates and inadequate sanitation. The parasite primarily affects children ages 1-14. The worms live in the intestines, and the eggs are passed through the feces of an infected person and contaminate the soil. They are transmitted by ingestion of the eggs on unwashed fruits and vegetables, utensils, or dirty hands that have been exposed to feces-contaminated soil. People with mild infections usually have no symptoms. Heavier infections can produce frequent, painful passage of stool that contains mucus, water, and blood; rectal prolapse can occur. Severe infections can lead to bowel obstruction, rupture, or even death. Malnutrition can develop among those infected with intestinal worms. Children with these infections may also have mental and physical growth impairments. Whipworm infections are preventable and treatable with prescribed medication.

CDC – Trichuriasis. US Centers for Disease Control & Prevention. 2020.

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