Working Groups update 2022
Let's take a look at the 2022 achievements of the Global Schistosomiasis Alliance Working Groups:
- Implementation Working Group (IWG) held a meeting to discuss the new WHO recommendations for human schistosomiasis, to understand the demand and supply of treatment, how to prioritise treatment, and how countries are responding to the recommendations. This discussion fed into the Schistosomiasis and Soil-transmitted Helminthiasis Disease Specific Group meeting at the NNN annual conference in Nepal.
- Dr May Sule from Cranfield University and Dr Giulio De Leo from Stanford University were appointed as chairs of the Engineering Working Group (EWG). The group is working on an information piece for sectors involved in water and agriculture infrastructure development to highlight the impact schistosomiasis can have on health and socio-economic outcomes, as well as potential preventative and mitigating measures that can be put in place.
- Monitoring and Evaluation Working Group (M&E WG) met to discuss feeding into the relevant WHO Technical Advisory Group on Schistosomiasis and Soil-transmitted helminthiasis subgroups dealing with M&E, to hear updates from the Schistosomiasis Oversampling Study and discuss current challenges and questions on schistosomiasis M&E. These challenges and questions will be the focus of future meetings for the group.
- Behaviour Change and Health Education Working Group (BCHE WG) held a panel session at the International Social and Behavior Change Communication Summit on “Multisector action to enable social and behaviour change for the elimination of schistosomiasis, a water-borne Neglected Tropical Disease”.
- Research Working Group (RWG) organised a session at ICOPA 2022 “Morbidity and spill over impact associated with Schistosoma infections: an updated appraisal” and at COR NTD 2022 “Surveillance for NTDs: Lessons Learned and cross-disease implications”.
- The members of the Diagnostic workstream fed into the GSA - INSPiRED symposium on Diagnosis of schistosomiasis by CCA or CAA detecting lateral flow tests.
- Snail and Malacology work streams. Drs Tom Pennance and Martina Laidemitt were appointed chairs of the Snail work stream (Snail Genomics). Together with Dr Fiona Allan, chair of the Malacology work stream, they held joints meetings on ‘Diagnostic tools for detection of Schistosoma in snails and the environment’ and ‘The microbiomes of Biomphalaria’. The work streams are currently collecting information via an online survey - Challenges and solutions for the import and export of schistosome and snail specimens. We welcome you to share your experience.
- Genital Schistosomiasis Community of Practice continued to grow, sharing news, events, articles and resources on genital schistosomiasis for researchers and practitioners working on Female and Male Genital Schistosomiasis.