Inferring the spatial distribution of visceral leishmaniasis burden in India
Emily Nightingale (London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine)
Monday 16th October 15:00-16:00 Maths 311B
Visceral leishmaniasis (VL) is a debilitating and - without treatment - highly fatal disease which burdens impoverished communities in north-eastern India. Control and, ultimately, elimination of VL depends heavily on prompt case detection, with delays contributing to persistence of transmission and the risk of resurgence in a population with likely waning immunity. However, the constraints of this elimination setting inevitably demand a reduction in the intensity of surveillance in order for the programme to be sustainable in the long-term. An understanding of patterns in disease burden at a fine geographic scale could inform optimal and efficient use of available resources to guide case detection activities, improving promptness of detection in a way that is sustainable from pre- to post-elimination.
In this presentation I will discuss the inference can be gained from routinely-collected data to inform the VL elimination programme at this late stage. I will also briefly link this to some more recent work relating to polio elimination and how the different opportunities for surveillance in this setting make way for greater confidence in validating the interruption of transmission.