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BMJ Open ; 12(3): e056706, 2022 03 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1794496


OBJECTIVES: To determine the causes of lobar pneumonia in rural Gambia. DESIGN AND SETTING: Population-based pneumonia surveillance at seven peripheral health facilities and two regional hospitals in rural Gambia. 7-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV7) was introduced routinely in August 2009 and replaced by PCV13 from May 2011. METHODS: Prospective pneumonia surveillance was undertaken among all ages with referral of suspected pneumonia cases to the regional hospitals. Blood culture and chest radiographs were performed routinely while lung or pleural aspirates were collected from selected, clinically stable patients with pleural effusion on radiograph and/or large, dense, peripheral consolidation. We used conventional microbiology, and from 8 April 2011 to 17 July 2012, used a multiplex PCR assay on lung and pleural aspirates. We calculated proportions with pathogens, associations between coinfecting pathogens and PCV effectiveness. PARTICIPANTS: 2550 patients were admitted with clinical pneumonia; 741 with lobar pneumonia or pleural effusion. We performed 181 lung or pleural aspirates and multiplex PCR on 156 lung and 4 pleural aspirates. RESULTS: Pathogens were detected in 116/160 specimens, the most common being Streptococcus pneumoniae(n=68), Staphylococcus aureus (n=26) and Haemophilus influenzae type b (n=11). Bacteria (n=97) were more common than viruses (n=49). Common viruses were bocavirus (n=11) and influenza (n=11). Coinfections were frequent (n=55). Moraxella catarrhalis was detected in eight patients and in every case there was coinfection with S. pneumoniae. The odds ratio of vaccine-type pneumococcal pneumonia in patients with two or three compared with zero doses of PCV was 0.17 (95% CI 0.06 to 0.51). CONCLUSIONS: Lobar pneumonia in rural Gambia was caused primarily by bacteria, particularly S. pneumoniae and S. aureus. Coinfection was common and M. catarrhalis always coinfected with S. pneumoniae. PCV was highly efficacious against vaccine-type pneumococcal pneumonia.

Coinfection , Pleural Effusion , Pneumococcal Infections , Pneumonia, Pneumococcal , Viruses , Coinfection/epidemiology , Gambia/epidemiology , Humans , Infant , Lung , Pneumococcal Infections/prevention & control , Pneumococcal Vaccines/therapeutic use , Pneumonia, Pneumococcal/diagnosis , Pneumonia, Pneumococcal/epidemiology , Pneumonia, Pneumococcal/prevention & control , Prospective Studies , Staphylococcus aureus , Streptococcus pneumoniae/genetics
PLoS One ; 16(10): e0258961, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1484862


INTRODUCTION: In 2011, member states of the World Health Organization (WHO) Africa Regional Office (AFRO) resolved to eliminate Measles by 2020. Our study aims to assess The Gambia's progress towards the set AFRO measles elimination target and highlight surveillance and immunisation gaps to better inform future measles prevention strategies. MATERIAL AND METHODS: A retrospective review of measles surveillance data for the period 2011-2019, was extracted from The Gambia case-based measles surveillance database. WHO-UNICEF national coverage estimates were used for estimating national level MCV coverage. Measles post campaign coverage survey coverage estimates were used to estimate national measles campaign coverage. RESULTS: One hundred and twenty-five of the 863 reported suspected cases were laboratory confirmed as measles cases. More than half (53.6%) of the confirmed cases have unknown vaccination status, 24% of cases were vaccinated, 52.8% of cases occurred among males, and 72.8% cases were among urban residents. The incidence of measles cases per million population was lowest (0) in 2011-2012 and highest in 2015 and 2016 (31 and 23 respectively). The indicator for surveillance sensitivity was met in all years except in 2016 and 2019. Children aged 5-9 years (Incidence Rate Ratio-IRR = 0.6) and residents of Central River region (IRR = 0.21) had lower measles risk whilst unvaccinated (Adjusted IRR = 5.95) and those with unknown vaccination status (IRR 2.21) had higher measles risk. Vaccine effectiveness was 89.5%. CONCLUSION: The Gambia's quest to attain measles elimination status by 2020 has registered significant success but it is unlikely that all target indicators will be met. Vaccination has been very effective in preventing cases. There is variation in measles risk by health region, and it will be important to take it into account when designing prevention and control strategies. The quality of case investigations should be improved to enhance the quality of surveillance for decision making.

Immunization Programs , Measles Vaccine/therapeutic use , Measles/epidemiology , Vaccination Coverage , Adolescent , Adult , Child , Child, Preschool , Disease Eradication , Female , Gambia/epidemiology , Humans , Incidence , Infant , Infant, Newborn , Male , Measles/prevention & control , Population Surveillance , Retrospective Studies
Emerg Infect Dis ; 27(8): 2064-2072, 2021 Aug.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1319582


The severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) pandemic is evolving differently in Africa than in other regions. Africa has lower SARS-CoV-2 transmission rates and milder clinical manifestations. Detailed SARS-CoV-2 epidemiologic data are needed in Africa. We used publicly available data to calculate SARS-CoV-2 infections per 1,000 persons in The Gambia. We evaluated transmission rates among 1,366 employees of the Medical Research Council Unit The Gambia (MRCG), where systematic surveillance of symptomatic cases and contact tracing were implemented. By September 30, 2020, The Gambia had identified 3,579 SARS-CoV-2 cases, including 115 deaths; 67% of cases were identified in August. Among infections, MRCG staff accounted for 191 cases; all were asymptomatic or mild. The cumulative incidence rate among nonclinical MRCG staff was 124 infections/1,000 persons, which is >80-fold higher than estimates of diagnosed cases among the population. Systematic surveillance and seroepidemiologic surveys are needed to clarify the extent of SARS-CoV-2 transmission in Africa.

COVID-19 , Africa , Gambia/epidemiology , Humans , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Seroepidemiologic Studies