Purpose and Priorities
The GSA Research WG purpose is to convene researchers around research priority needs that would benefit from a coordinated, multi-researcher approach in order to deliver beneficial outputs. Outputs include but are not limited to a meeting to highlight/promote particular needs/challenges/findings/tools, a strategy to disseminate new findings/challenges/tools, development of tools to accelerate priority research, a network to promote schistosomiasis control and elimination best practices from research findings etc.
By working together the RWG is also in a stronger position to advocate for key priorities and amplify key messages.
The RWG will take into account the Schistosomiasis Action Plan developed by GSA partners in 2018 which identified critical actions to accelerate progress for schistosomiasis control and elimination goals for 2020 and beyond. Actions of interest to this Research WG group are:
- Action 1. Delivery, ensure treatment all at risk pops.
- Action 4. Optimize MDA through operational research
- Action 3. Improve compliance by strengthening social mobilizations, improved Behaviour Change.
- Action 12. Develop/introduce effective WASH & Behaviour Change interventions for schistosomiasis.
- Action 6. Develop/introduce revised diagnostic (assay & method) for implementation
- Action 9. Develop/introduce revised diagnostic approach for elimination certification
The research working group also puts a focus on disease consequences that are not covered by the control programmes and vector control. Often neglected, the RWG also supports efforts for new drug discovery to complement the current available treatment option(s).
The priorities of the GSA Working Group include but are not limited to:
- Female & Male Genital Schistosomiasis - taken forward by the Genital Schistosomiasis Community of Practice
- Vector control - taken forward by the Snail Research & Control work streams
- Diagnostics – taken forward by the Diagnostic work stream
- Additional priorities to develop:
- Morbidity & infection markers
- Drug discovery & resistance
- Zoonotic aspects of schistosomiasis
- Implementation research
- Migration of people (Displaced people, urban-rural migration, cross-border migration)
- Priority areas to be further discussed: vaccines, impact of climate change and emerging schistosomiasis, minimizing negative impact of conflict and/or disease outbreaks on programmes & research activities, strengthening IEC content in endemic countries (with Behaviour Change Working Group).
If you would like to be involved please email us: anouk [dot] gouvras [at] eliminateschisto [dot] org