In July, Malaria Consortium (MC), Cambodia started working with forest goers in Prey Lang forest, the largest remaining woodland in mainland Southeast Asia covering three highly endemic provinces in Cambodia. The MC team will concentrate its efforts in the forest areas that are in the southern part of Stung Treng Province building on our work in the cross border areas in this region. Malaria Consortium is implementing this Operational Research project in close collaboration with Institut Pasteur du Cambodge (IPC) after an Ethics Approval has been granted end June 2019 by NECHR.
The project has trained 24 forest goers to provide testing and treatment services inside the forest. Over the next year, this group of forest goers will be based fulltime inside Prey Lang where they will cover an area of 700 square km. Their activities are continuously monitored by smartphones with GPS trackers, and for each person tested, they will fill in a geo-tagged questionnaire. The results will help us develop an understanding of areas with high human density, as well as concentrations of positive malaria cases.
In addition, to providing early testing and treatment to this high-risk group, the project will compare the efficacy of Mass screening and treatment, Passive case detection, and Reactive case detection when targeting forest goers in remote areas. As Cambodia moves towards reaching its elimination targets and concentrating efforts in high-risk areas such as forest having this information will help to inform the Policymakers what are the most effective strategies in this context.
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