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Ivermectin Treatment Coverage Validation in Two Onchocerciasis Endemic Districts in Ethiopia: A Community-Based Cross-Sectional Study, 2019

Authors Churko C, Yihune M, Teshome A, Chisha Y, Getachew B, Sleshi M, Asfaw MA, Shibiru T, Ayele NN, Seife F, Zerdo Z, Bekele Kassahun A

Received 22 October 2020

Accepted for publication 17 December 2020

Published 18 January 2021 Volume 2021:14 Pages 137—144


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Scott Fraser

Chuchu Churko,1 Manaye Yihune,2 Abinet Teshome,3 Yilma Chisha,2 Birhanu Getachew,4 Markos Sleshi,4 Mekuria Asnakew Asfaw,1 Tamiru Shibiru,5 Nebiyu Negussu Ayele,6 Fikre Seife,6 Zerihun Zerdo,1 Alemayehu Bekele Kassahun1

1Collaborative Research and Training Center for Neglected Tropical Diseases, College of Medicine and Health Sciences, Arba Minch University, Arba Minch, Ethiopia; 2Department of Public Health, College of Medicine and Health Sciences, Arba Minch University, Arba Minch, Ethiopia; 3Department of Biomedical Sciences, College of Medicine and Health Sciences, Arba Minch University, Arba Minch, Ethiopia; 4Ethiopia Public Health Institute, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia; 5School of Medicine, College of Medicine and Health Sciences, Arba Minch University, Arba Minch, Ethiopia; 6Neglected Tropical Diseases, Federal Ministry of Health, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

Correspondence: Chuchu Churko Email

Background: Onchocerciasis is the second leading cause of blindness globally next to trachoma, thus eliminating the infection is an important health priority. It is estimated that 15.7 million people are at risk of infection in different parts of Ethiopia. Mass drug administration with ivermectin at community and school level is the basis for control and elimination of onchocerciasis. This study was aimed at validating onchocerciasis treatment coverage in the selected districts of Ethiopia.
Methods: A community-based cross-sectional study was employed in Itang special and Wombera districts of Ethiopia, from April 1 to 30, 2019 G.C. We used a coverage validation survey builder tool to compute sample size. Individuals aged five years old and above were eligible population. Data were entered into Microsoft Excel and exported to STATA 14 for cleaning and analyses. A chi-square test was used to note statistical association of the outcome variables with independent variables.
Main Findings: A total of 3765 individuals were interviewed. Of these, 3244 were offered onchocerciasis treatment. The overall treatment coverage of onchocerciasis in the two selected districts of Ethiopia was 85.9% of the eligible population (3235/3765) (95% CI, 84.8%, 87%). There was significant difference between the two districts in terms of ivermectin offering (X2=70.467, P< 0.001). School attendance was also significantly associated with treatment offering and swallowing status (X2=77.29, P< 0.001; and X2=30.581, P< 0.001). The main reported reasons for not being offered ivermectin were “being absent” (40.86%) and “not knowing about the mass drug administration” (MDA) (25.29%).
Conclusion: In conclusion, the treatment coverage of onchocerciasis in this survey was higher than minimum national desired therapeutic coverage. Treatment coverage in Wombera was higher than Itang special district. In addition, children who attended school had a higher chance of swallowing the drug.

Keywords: ivermectin, onchocerciasis, coverage survey, mass drug administration

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