UPDATE: WHO interim guidance on the implementation of NTD programmes
The WHO have released interim guidance on "Considerations for implementing mass treatment, active case‐finding and population-based surveys for neglected tropical diseases in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic"
This document provides a decision-making framework for implementation of mass treatment interventions, active case-finding campaigns and population-based surveys for NTDs in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. A two-step approach is proposed: a risk–benefit assessment, to decide if the planned activity should proceed; and an examination of a list of precautionary measures that should be applied with the aim of decreasing the risk of transmission of COVID-19 associated with the activity, and strengthening the capacity of the health system to manage any residual risk.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has issued interim guidance for NTD programmes in accordance with the public health measures put in place to curb the Covid-19 pandemic.
Firstly WHO recommends that mass treatment campaigns (MDA), community-based surveys and active case-finding activities are postponed until further notice.
Secondly, the WHO recommends that the following activities are supported wherever possible:
- Prompt diagnosis, treatment and care of patients with NTDs presenting at healthcare facilities.
- Essential vector control measures.
Local authorities can use existing NTD platforms, surveillance mechanisms and WASH/Health education opportunities to support the implementation of Covid-19 measures.
Decision-making framework for implementation of NTD interventions and surveys
Community-based health care
- Community-based health care, including outreach and campaigns,in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic Interim guidance, May 2020
Facility-based health care
- Maintaining essential health services: operational guidance for the COVID-19 context Interim guidance, 1 June 2020
Selected WHO Guidance on COVID-19
A selection of WHO publications on COVID-19 listed below includes the technical and operational context for implementing NTD interventions.
Epidemiological scenarios and public health response
- Critical preparedness, readiness and response actions for COVID-19
- Considerations in adjusting public health and social measures in the context of COVID-19
Advice on personal protection for health staff
- Advice on the use of masks in the context of COVID-19
- Rational use of personal protective equipment for coronavirus disease (COVID-19) and considerations during severe shortages
- Q&A on infection prevention and control for health care workers caring for patients with suspected or confirmed 2019-nCoV
Guidance on essential health services in the context of COVID-19
WASH and COVID-19
Guidance for special settings
- Key Messages and Actions for COVID-19 Prevention and Control in Schools
- Preparedness, prevention and control of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) for refugees and migrants in non-camp settings