• Access to diagnosis and treatment of Chagas disease/infection in endemic and non-endemic countries in the XXI century.

      Villa, L; Morote, S; Bernal, O; Bulla, D; Albajar-Vinas, P; Médicos Sin Fronteras, Barcelona, Catalunya, Espana. (2007-10-30)
      In this article, Médicos Sin Fronteras (MSF) Spain faces the challenge of selecting, piecing together, and conveying in the clearest possible way, the main lessons learnt over the course of the last seven years in the world of medical care for Chagas disease. More than two thousand children under the age of 14 have been treated; the majority of whom come from rural Latin American areas with difficult access. It is based on these lessons learnt, through mistakes and successes, that MSF advocates that medical care for patients with Chagas disease be a reality, in a manner which is inclusive (not exclusive), integrated (with medical, psychological, social, and educational components), and in which the patient is actively followed. This must be a multi-disease approach with permanent quality controls in place based on primary health care (PHC). Rapid diagnostic tests and new medications should be available, as well as therapeutic plans and patient management (including side effects) with standardised flows for medical care for patients within PHC in relation to secondary and tertiary level, inclusive of epidemiological surveillance systems.
    • Examples of tropical disease control in the humanitarian medical programmes of MSF and Merlin.

      Balasegaram, M; Dejene, S; Tinnemann, P; Perkins, S; Davidson, R N; Médecins Sans Frontières-UK, 67-74 Saffron Hill, London EC1N 8QX, UK. manica.balasegaram@london.msf.org (Elsevier, 2006-04)
      Humanitarian medical programmes in the tropics have the opportunity to provide beacons of good practice. The use of modern drugs and diagnostics, a lack of bureaucracy, adequate budgets, motivated staff and well-functioning supply lines all contribute to the success of this approach. At a joint meeting of the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine, the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, Médecins Sans Frontières and Merlin, new data were presented on the outcomes of recent humanitarian programmes to control malaria (Ethiopia), human African trypanosomiasis (south Sudan), Lassa fever (Sierra Leone) and tuberculosis (Tomsk, former USSR).