Combining Visceral Leishmaniasis Risk Mapping and Deworming
Hussein Abdullahi of Wajir County Government in Kenya will combine a mass drug administration effort to treat soil-transmitted helminth (parasitic worm) infections in Wajir County with a survey of the number of cases of visceral leishmaniasis, which is transmitted by sand flies. Visceral leishmaniasis can be lethal and has recently become endemic in this poor Kenyan county, but the actual disease burden is unknown. They will compile community data on mapped settlements in two subcounties, and recruit and train local health workers to distribute questionnaires to help identify past and present cases of visceral leishmaniasis, which will help identify risk factors. In parallel, these workers will distribute deworming drugs, which has been difficult in the area due to low attendance rates at schools where mass deworming efforts normally take place.