The power of touch
From China: hope and lessons for COVID-19 control
Azman, AS; Luquero, FJ
Learning from a massive epidemic: measles in DRC.
Ducomble, T; Gignoux, E
Implementation of community and facility-based HIV self-testing under routine conditions in southern Eswatini
Pasipamire, L; Nesbitt, R; Dube, L; Mabena, E; Nzima, M; Dlamini, M; Rugongo, N; Maphalala, N; Obulutsa, TA; Ciglenecki, I; Kerschberger, B
WHO recommends HIV self-testing (HIVST) as an additional approach to HIV testing services. The study describes the strategies used during phase-in of HIVST under routine conditions in Eswatini (formerly Swaziland).
Between May 2017 and January 2018, assisted and unassisted oral HIVST was offered at HIV testing services (HTS) sites to people aged ≥ 16 years. Additional support tools were available, including a telephone hotline answered 24/7, HIVST demonstration videos and printed educational information about HIV prevention and care services. Demographic characteristics of HIVST users were described and compared with standard blood-based HTS in the community. HIVST results were monitored with follow-up phone calls and the hotline.
During the 9-month period, 1895 people accessed HIVST and 2415 HIVST kits were distributed. More people accessed HIVST kits in the community (n = 1365, 72.0%) than at health facilities (n = 530, 28.0%). The proportion of males and median age among those accessing HIVST and standard HTS in the community were similar (49.3%, 29 years HIVST vs. 48.7%, 27 years standard HTS). In total, 34 (3.9%) reactive results were reported from 938 people with known HIVST results; 32.4% were males, and median age was 30 years (interquartile range 25-36). Twenty-one (62%) patients were known to have received confirmatory blood-based HTS; of these, 20 (95%) had concordant reactive results and 19 (95%) were linked to HIV care at a clinic.
Integration of HIVST into existing HIV facility- and community-based testing strategies in Eswatini was found to be feasible, and HIVST has been adopted by national testing bodies in Eswatini.
Europe's migrant containment policies threaten the response to COVID-19
Hargreaves, S; Kumar, BN; McKee, M; Jones, L; Veizis, A
Drug-associated adverse events in the treatment of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis: an individual patient data meta-analysis
Lan, Z; Ahmad, N; Baghaei, P; Barkane, L; Benedetti, A; Brode, SK; Brust, JCM; Campbell, JR; Chang, VWL; Falzon, D; Guglielmetti, L; Isaakidis, P; Kempker, RR; Kipiani, M; Kuksa, L; Lange, C; Laniado-Laborín, R; Nahid, P; Rodrigues, D; Singla, R; Udwadia, ZF; Menzies, D
Treatment of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis requires long-term therapy with a combination of multiple second-line drugs. These drugs are associated with numerous adverse events that can cause severe morbidity, such as deafness, and in some instances can lead to death. Our aim was to estimate the absolute and relative frequency of adverse events associated with different tuberculosis drugs to provide useful information for clinicians and tuberculosis programmes in selecting optimal treatment regimens.
We did a meta-analysis using individual-level patient data that were obtained from studies that reported adverse events that resulted in permanent discontinuation of anti-tuberculosis medications. We used a database created for our previous meta-analysis of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis treatment and outcomes, for which we did a systematic review of literature published between Jan 1, 2009, and Aug 31, 2015 (updated April 15, 2016), and requested individual patient-level information from authors. We also considered for this analysis studies contributing patient-level data in response to a public call made by WHO in 2018. Meta-analysis for proportions and arm-based network meta-analysis were done to estimate the incidence of adverse events for each tuberculosis drug.
58 studies were identified, including 50 studies from the updated individual patient data meta-analysis for multidrug-resistant tuberculosis treatment. 35 of these studies, with 9178 patients, were included in our analysis. Using meta-analysis of proportions, drugs with low risks of adverse event occurrence leading to permanent discontinuation included levofloxacin (1·3% [95% CI 0·3-5·0]), moxifloxacin (2·9% [1·6-5·0]), bedaquiline (1·7% [0·7-4·2]), and clofazimine (1·6% [0·5-5·3]). Relatively high incidence of adverse events leading to permanent discontinuation was seen with three second-line injectable drugs (amikacin: 10·2% [6·3-16·0]; kanamycin: 7·5% [4·6-11·9]; capreomycin: 8·2% [6·3-10·7]), aminosalicylic acid (11·6% [7·1-18·3]), and linezolid (14·1% [9·9-19·6]). Risk of bias in selection of studies was judged to be low because there were no important differences between included and excluded studies. Variability between studies was significant for most outcomes analysed.
Fluoroquinolones, clofazimine, and bedaquiline had the lowest incidence of adverse events leading to permanent drug discontinuation, whereas second-line injectable drugs, aminosalicylic acid, and linezolid had the highest incidence. These results suggest that close monitoring of adverse events is important for patients being treated for multidrug-resistant tuberculosis. Our results also underscore the urgent need for safer and better-tolerated drugs to reduce morbidity from treatment itself for patients with multidrug-resistant tuberculosis.
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