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BMJ Open ; 11(8): e046125, 2021 08 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1376488


INTRODUCTION: Leprosy, or Hansen's disease, remains a cause of preventable disability. Early detection, treatment and prevention are key to reducing transmission. Post-exposure prophylaxis with single-dose rifampicin (SDR-PEP) reduces the risk of developing leprosy when administered to screened contacts of patients. This has been adopted in the WHO leprosy guidelines. The PEP4LEP study aims to determine the most effective and feasible method of screening people at risk of developing leprosy and administering chemoprophylaxis to contribute to interrupting transmission. METHODS AND ANALYSIS: PEP4LEP is a cluster-randomised implementation trial comparing two interventions of integrated skin screening combined with SDR-PEP distribution to contacts of patients with leprosy in Ethiopia, Mozambique and Tanzania. One intervention is community-based, using skin camps to screen approximately 100 community contacts per leprosy patient, and to administer SDR-PEP when eligible. The other intervention is health centre-based, inviting household contacts of leprosy patients to be screened in a local health centre and subsequently receive SDR-PEP when eligible. The mobile health (mHealth) tool SkinApp will support health workers' capacity in integrated skin screening. The effectiveness of both interventions will be compared by assessing the rate of patients with leprosy detected and case detection delay in months, as well as feasibility in terms of cost-effectiveness and acceptability. ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION: Ethical approval was obtained from the national ethical committees of Ethiopia (MoSHE), Mozambique (CNBS) and Tanzania (NIMR/MoHCDEC). Study results will be published open access in peer-reviewed journals, providing evidence for the implementation of innovative leprosy screening methods and chemoprophylaxis to policymakers. TRIAL REGISTRATION NUMBER: NL7294 (NTR7503).

Leprosy , Ethiopia , Feasibility Studies , Humans , Leprosy/diagnosis , Leprosy/drug therapy , Leprosy/prevention & control , Mozambique , Tanzania
Pan Afr Med J ; 38: 243, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1257120


The first COVID-19 case was reported in Ethiopia on 13th March 2020 and series of announcements of set of measures, proclamation and directives have been enacted to fight the coronavirus pandemic. These have implications for the regular health services including the TB control program. This brief communication assesses the impact of the COVID-19 response on the TB control activities of Addis Ababa health centers based on research project data. We compared the patient flows in pre-COVID-19 period (quarter 1, Q1) and during COVID-19 (quarter 2, Q2 and quarter 3, Q3) of 2020 at 56 health centers in Addis Ababa from all 10 sub-cities per sub-city. The patient flow declined from 3,473 in Q1 to 1,062 in Q2 and 1,074 in Q3, which is a decrease by 62-76% and 52-80% in Q2 and Q3 respectively as compared to that of Q1. In Q2, Kolfe keranio and Kirkos sub-cities recorded the biggest decline (76 and 75% respectively) whereas Yeka sub-city had the least decline (62%). In Q3, Kirkos sub-city had the biggest decline (80%) and Addis ketema sub-city had the lowest (52%). We conclude that the series of measures, state of emergency proclamation and government directives issued to counter the spread of COVID-19 and the public response to these significantly affected the TB control activities in Addis Ababa city as attested by the decrease in the patient flow at the clinics. Health authorities may inform the public that essential health services are still available and open to everyone in need of these services.

COVID-19 , Delivery of Health Care/organization & administration , Tuberculosis/prevention & control , Ethiopia , Humans