Note: This thread is related to #Coronavirus #COVID19

Follow the World Health Organization's instructions to reduce your risk of infection:

1/ Frequently clean hands by using alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water.

2/ When coughing and sneezing cover mouth and nose with flexed elbow or tissue - throw issue away immediately and wash hands.

3/ Avoid close contact with anyone that has fever and cough.

Natalie E. Dean, PhD+ Your Authors @nataliexdean Assistant Professor of Biostatistics at @UF specializing in emerging infectious diseases and vaccine study design. @HarvardBiostats PhD. Tweets my own. Jun. 15, 2020 1 min read + Your Authors

A rich manuscript with COVID-19 strategies recommended by African experts. There's a lot in here, particularly in Table 1, so I'm picking out a few highlights. 1/11
h/t @BHedtGauthier
 https://academic.oup.com/cid/advance-article/doi/10.1093/cid/ciaa695/5849218 

Summary:
"This crisis presents a unique opportunity to align COVID-19 services with those already in place for HIV, TB, Malaria, and other non-communicable diseases through mobilization of Africa's inter-professional healthcare workforce to contain the pandemic." 2/11

Community health workers: "In South Africa, approximately 28,000 Community Healthcare Workers have been deployed. By the end of April 2020, over six million people were screened and 42,000 referred for testing." In Tanzania, teams walk the streets educating the community. 3/11

Rumor control: An important strategy is "ongoing communication to communities, in local languages using multiple platforms and players to immediately address inaccuracies circulating on social media by using authoritative voices - daily myth busters." 4/11

Strengthen existing laboratory networks: "Refresh and train existing laboratory technicians working in molecular
diagnosis." "Refurbish the National reference laboratory." 5/11

Decentralize testing: "Incorporation of private and NGO labs.. and the use of existing available point-of-care diagnostic platforms for other diseases (TB, HIV) are promising strategies to improve availability and turnaround times and reduce reliance on central labs." 6/11

Make testing more accessible: "Point-of-care COVID-19 testing at pharmacies may improve access to care and effective use of available healthcare workforce." 7/11

Support the healthcare workforce: They recommend easing access to testing by having testing centers at workplaces, improving testing turnaround for staff, and support staff quarantining while waiting for results, especially with management of their households/families. 8/11

Leverage existing resources for contract tracing: The Democratic Republic of the Congo has adapted training materials and protocols used for Ebola. Community healthcare workers use mobile phone calls, SMS texts, and home visits if necessary. 9/11

Conclusion: "Resource-constrained African governments face difficult choices regarding surveillance and easing of lockdown. Control of the pandemic will be possible only with efficient community screening, testing, and contact tracing and behavioral change interventions..." 10/11

"... which require adequate resources and a well-supported, community-based team of trained, protected personnel. Every part of this public health chain needs to be strengthened." 11/END


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