New and improved policies and control strategies
TDR is helping to develop a number of strategies that involve the community in disease control. During the biennium, studies on home management of malaria in several countries indicated the benefits of prepackaging of antimalarials for children, ensuring that more of them receive the correct dose of treatment, and receive it promptly.
The successful approach of community-directed treatment (ComDT), first developed for onchocerciasis and now for lymphatic filariasis, is also being evaluated as a strategy for integrated delivery of a range of other health interventions. Another community practice for lymphatic filariasis is simple footcare, which TDR studies have helped show to be an effective intervention that improves quality of life for patients.
TDR studies are also helping towards elimination of some diseases. Information to guide strategies for elimination of lymphatic filariasis is being collected in large studies in India and Africa. The long-term impact of the strategy for onchocerciasis – of mass treatment with ivermectin – on transmission of the disease has now been evaluated. Other strategies TDR is working on include those for rapid assessment, for example, RAPLOA is a strategy for rapidly assessing and diagnosing Loa loa in communities. Strategy development is covered by area D of the TDR strategy.