• Effectiveness of oral cholera vaccine in preventing cholera among fishermen in Lake Chilwa, Malawi: A case-control study

      Grandesso, F; Kasambara, W; Page, AL; Debes, AK; M'bang'ombe, M; Palomares, A; Lechevalier, P; Pezzoli, L; Alley, I; Salumu, L; et al. (Elsevier, 2019-06-19)
      Background: In response to a cholera outbreak among mobile, difficult-to-reach fishermen on Lake Chilwa, Malawi in 2016, a novel vaccine distribution strategy exploited the proven vaccine thermostability. Fishermen, while taking the first vaccine dose under supervision, received the second dose in a sealed bag, and were told to drink it two weeks later. This study assessed short-term vaccine protection of this strategy. Methods: Patients with diarrhoea admitted to health facilities around lake were interviewed and a stool sample collected for PCR testing. Vaccine effectiveness was assessed in a case-control test-negative design by comparing cases (PCR-positive for V. cholerae O1) and controls (patients with diarrhoea but PCR-negative) and with the screening method that compared the proportions of vaccinated among cholera cases versus the general fishermen population. Results: Of 145 study participants, 120 were fishermen living on the lake. Vaccine effectiveness at three-months was 90.0% [95%CI:38.8;98.4] among fishermen and 83.3% [95%CI: 20.8; 96.5] among all participants in the case-control test-negative design, and 97.5% [95%CI: 90.9;99.3] with the screening method. Conclusion: This strategy was effective in providing short-term protection in fishermen against cholera. Further research is needed to determine the adding value of the second dose and to identify the optimal vaccination strategies for different contexts.
    • Highly targeted cholera vaccination campaigns in urban setting are feasible: The experience in Kalemie, Democratic Republic of Congo

      Massing, LA; Aboubakar, S; Blake, A; Page, AL; Cohuet, S; Ngandwe, A; Mukomena Sompwe, E; Ramazani, R; Allheimen, M; Levaillant, P; et al. (Public Library of Science, 2018-05-07)
      Oral cholera vaccines are primarily recommended by the World Health Organization for cholera control in endemic countries. However, the number of cholera vaccines currently produced is very limited and examples of OCV use in endemic countries, and especially in urban settings, are scarce. A vaccination campaign was organized by Médecins Sans Frontières and the Ministry of Health in a highly endemic area in the Democratic Republic of Congo. This study aims to describe the vaccine coverage achieved with this highly targeted vaccination campaign and the acceptability among the vaccinated communities.
    • Measles seroprevalence after reactive vaccination campaigns during the 2015 measles outbreak in four health zones of the former Katanga Province, Democratic Republic of Congo.

      Keating, P; Carrion Martin, AI; Blake, A; Lechevalier, P; Uzzeni, F; Gignoux, E; Okonta, C; Langendorf, C; Smit, S; Ahuka, S; et al. (BioMed Central, 2019-08-22)
      BACKGROUND: Measles continues to circulate in the Democratic Republic of Congo, and the country suffered from several important outbreaks over the last 5 years. Despite a large outbreak starting in the former province of Katanga in 2010 and the resulting immunization activities, another outbreak occurred in 2015 in this same region. We conducted measles seroprevalence surveys in four health zones (HZ) in the former Katanga Province in order to assess the immunity against measles in children 6 months to 14 years after the 2015 outbreak. METHODS: We conducted multi-stage cluster surveys stratified by age group in four HZs, Kayamba, Malemba-Nkulu, Fungurume, and Manono. The age groups were 6-11 months, 12-59 months, and 5-14 years in Kayamba and Malemba-Nkulu, 6-59 months and 5-14 years in Manono and Fungurume. The serological status was measured on dried capillary blood spots collected systematically along with vaccination status (including routine Extended Program of Immunization (EPI), and supplementary immunization activities (SIAs)) and previous self-reported history of suspected measles. RESULTS: Overall seroprevalence against measles was 82.7% in Kayamba, 97.6% in Malemba-Nkulu, 83.2% in Manono, and 74.4% in Fungurume, and it increased with age in all HZs. It was 70.7 and 93.8% in children 12-59 months in Kayamba and Malemba-Nkulu, and 49.8 and 64.7% in children 6-59 months in Fungurume and Manono. The EPI coverage was low but varied across HZ. The accumulation of any type of vaccination against measles resulted in an overall vaccine coverage (VC) of at least 85% in children 12-59 months in Kayamba and Malemba-Nkulu, 86.1 and 74.8% in children 6-59 months in Fungurume and Manono. Previous measles infection in 2015-early 2016 was more frequently reported in children aged 12-59 months or 6-59 months (depending on the HZ). CONCLUSION: The measured seroprevalence was consistent with the events that occurred in these HZs over the past few years. Measles seroprevalence might prove a valuable source of information to help adjust the timing of future SIAs and prioritizing support to the EPI in this region as long as the VC does not reach a level high enough to efficiently prevent epidemic flare-ups.
    • Oral cholera vaccination in hard-to-reach communities, Lake Chilwa, Malawi

      Grandesso, F; Rafael, F; Chipeta, S; Alley, I; Saussier, C; Nogareda, F; Burns, M; Lechevalier, P; Page, AL; Salumu, L; et al. (The World Health Organization, 2018-12-01)
      To evaluate vaccination coverage, identify reasons for non-vaccination and assess satisfaction with two innovative strategies for distributing second doses in an oral cholera vaccine campaign in 2016 in Lake Chilwa, Malawi, in response to a cholera outbreak.
    • Oral cholera vaccination in hard-to-reach communities, Lake Chilwa, Malawi

      Grandesso, F; Rafael, F; Chipeta, S; Alley, I; Saussier, C; Nogareda, F; Burns, M; Lechevalier, P; Page, AL; Salumu, L; et al. (World Health Organization, 2018-09-27)