Evidence of continued transmission of Wuchereria bancrofti and associated factors despite nine rounds of ivermectin and albendazole mass drug administration in Rufiji district, Tanzania

  • Clarer Jones Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences, Dar es Salaam
  • Donath S. Tarimo Muhimbili University of Health Sciences, Dar es Salaam
  • Mwelecele N. Malecela National Institute for Medical Research, Dar es Salaam
Keywords: Lymphatic filariasis, mass drug, schoolchildren, community compliance, Tanzania

Abstract

Background: In most sub-Saharan Africa, the National Lymphatic Filariasis Elimination Programme (NLFEP) is based on annual mass drug administration (MDA) with ivermectin and albendazole. In order to interrupt transmission, 4–6 rounds of MDA are required with at least 60–70% minimum effective coverage. Children born since the introduction of the MDA programme are recommended for assessing the interruption of transmission. The objective of this study was lymphatic filariasis transmission status after nine rounds of MDA in Rufiji district, Tanzania.

Methods: This cross sectional survey involved 270 heads of household. Parents or guardians were interviewed on behalf of the schoolchildren about their participation in MDA programme. Status of LF prevalence was assessed by measuring Wuchereria bancrofti circulating filarial antigens (CFA) in blood samples from standard one school children (6 – 9 years)   using immunochromatographic test cards.

Results: A total of 413 standard one schoolchildren were tested for CFA; 59 (14.3%) had CFA. Two thirds (66.8%) of the children did not participate in 2011 MDA round. Prevalence of CFA was significantly lower in younger (6.4%) than older children (40.4%) (p<0.05). Participation in the last (2011) MDA did not significantly change the prevalence W. bancrofti CFA (χ2 = 0.723, p=0.4). The recorded MDA coverage for 5 years including 2011 was above the 60–70 % minimum effective coverage. The community reported coverage was 40.4% for last MDA (2011), for previous MDAs was 53.0%; being far below the minimum effective coverage. Though the large majority (97.0%) of households had heard of LF, only about half (57.0%) knew it was transmitted by mosquitoes. Less than a half (43.6%) of households were aware of the adverse effects of LF, therefore motivated to participate in MDA.

Conclusion: The findings indicate that LF transmission has continued in Rufiji district despite nine rounds of MDA. Low compliance to MDAs due to community and programmatic factors were responsible for the continued LF transmission. Detailed entomological studies are required to establish LF transmission dynamics and the programmatic factors associated with MDA implementation in the area.

Author Biography

Clarer Jones, Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences, Dar es Salaam
Department of Parasitology & Medical Entomology; Senior Lecturer
Published
2015-04-04
How to Cite
JonesC., TarimoD. S., & MalecelaM. N. (2015). Evidence of continued transmission of Wuchereria bancrofti and associated factors despite nine rounds of ivermectin and albendazole mass drug administration in Rufiji district, Tanzania. Tanzania Journal of Health Research, 17(2). https://doi.org/10.4314/thrb.v17i2.5
Section
Articles

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eISSN: 1821-9241
print ISSN: 1821-6404