Knowledge hub

A fine scale eco-epidemiological study on endemic visceral leishmaniasis in north ethiopian villages

In an effort to better understand tranmission of VL in Northern Ethiopia, this study evaluated entomological, epidemiological and ecological factors associated with VL in three endemic villages.

Key findings include:

  • Vertisols (also known as black-cotton soil) were found positively related with Phlebotomus orientalis sand fly populations. Vertisols around houses could conribute to anthroponotic transmission.
  • From those found infected with Leishmania donovani the majority was under 15 years old. Also significantly more males succumbed to VL than females.
  • The study reported high abudance of infected individuals with high parasitemias who remain asymptomatic. These individuals may serve as a reservoir for anthroponotic transmission.
23 Apr 2018
Academic paper
Improving surveillance, Operational research

Socioeconomic benefit to individuals of achieving 2020 targets for four neglected tropical diseases controlled/eliminated by innovative and intensified disease management: Human African trypanosomiasis, leprosy, visceral leishmaniasis, Chagas disease

Systematic literature review uncovering that investments in NTD control and elimination by endemic country governments and their development partners lead to significant economic benefits, alongside the improvement of well-being and reduction of inequity.
19 Mar 2018
Academic paper

Positive Influence of Behavior Change Communication on Knowledge, Attitudes, and Practices for Visceral Leishmaniasis/Kala-azar in India

Study from India illustrating the importance of community engagement and health promotion activities within VL elimination programs. "Households that were exposed to community-based BCC activities largely using group and interpersonal communication had better knowledge, attitudes, and practices related to VL, including acceptance of IRS as a preventive measure, than households not exposed". 

13 Mar 2018
Academic paper

Ethical issues associated with vector-borne diseases, WHO report

A map of the ethical issues around vector-borne diseases (23-24 February 2017), including:

  • environmental and social determinants of health
  • ethics of vector control
  • aspects of ethics in surveillance and research
  • ethics of mass public health interventions
12 Mar 2018
Policy paper
Training health workers

“Kala-Azar is a Dishonest Disease”: Community Perspectives on Access Barriers to Visceral Leishmaniasis (Kala-Azar) Diagnosis and Care in Southern Gadarif, Sudan


Early diagnosis and treatment is the principal strategy to control visceral leishmaniasis (VL), or kala-azar in East Africa. As VL strikes remote rural, sparsely populated areas, kala-azar care might not be accessed optimally or timely. We conducted a qualitative study to explore access barriers in a longstanding kala-azar endemic area in southern Gadarif, Sudan. Former kala-azar patients or caretakers, community leaders, and health-care providers were purposively sampled and thematic data analysis was used. Our study participants revealed the multitude of difficulties faced when seeking care. The disease is well known in the area, yet misconceptions about causes and transmission persist. The care-seeking itineraries were not always straightforward: “shopping around” for treatments are common, partly linked to difficulties in diagnosing kala-azar. Kala-azar is perceived to be “hiding,” requiring multiple tests and other diseases must be treated first. Negative perceptions on quality of care in the public hospitals prevail, with the unavailability of drugs or staff as the main concern. Delay to seek care remains predominantly linked to economic constraint: albeit treatment is for free, patients have to pay out of pocket for everything else, pushing families further into poverty. Despite increased efforts to tackle the disease over the years, access to quality kala-azar care in this rural Sudanese context remains problematic. The barriers explored in this study are a compelling reminder of the need to boost efforts to address these barriers.

1 Mar 2018
Academic paper

Immunomodulatory Therapy of Visceral Leishmaniasis in Human Immunodeficiency Virus - Coinfected Patients

A 2018 review of literature on HIV/VL clinical management

5 Feb 2018
Academic paper
Case management
3.88 MB

Presentations & Materials from KalaCORE Regional Technical Review Meeting: VL control programme overview

From November  29 – December 1 2017, KalaCORE hosted a Regional Technical Review Meeting and Workshop in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, with representatives from the National Ministry of Health from all 3 KalaCORE-supported country programmes in Africa, DFID Ethiopia and DFID UK, KalaCORE implementing partners, WHO Geneva, WHO Sudan, WHO South Sudan and WHO Ethiopia, the KalaCORE Expert Steering Group, the NTD task force and the NGDO NTD task force.

The meeting succeeded in documenting lessons learned and improvement actions for current strategies across KalaCORE country contexts, prioritising activities for the remainder of the programme, sharing operational research findings for policy implementation, and initiating the pathway for developing the KalaCORE exit strategy and integration of key activities for sustainability.


18 Dec 2017
Improving surveillance, Health education, Case management
Ethiopia, Sudan, South Sudan
2.5 MB

Presentations from KalaCORE Regional Technical Review Meeting: Ethiopia

18 Dec 2017
Health education, Case management, Improving surveillance, Training health workers
1.87 MB

Presentations from KalaCORE Regional Technical Review Meeting: South Sudan

18 Dec 2017
Health education, Case management, Improving surveillance, Training health workers
South Sudan