Blog posts


Africa-Oxford Travel Grant Form

By humairaerfanahmed

AfOx is a cross university platform to support the development of equitable collaborations in research and teaching between staff at ...

The authors of this study focus on solutions that address joint temporal and spatial visualization but also consider what the future may bring in terms of visualization and how this may become of value for the coming era of real-time digital pathogen surveillance, where actionable results and adequate intervention strategies need to be obtained within days.

2nd August 2019 • comment

Advances in using Internet searches to track dengue

by Shihao Yang, Samuel C. Kou , Fred Lu, John S. Brownstein, Nicholas Brooke, Mauricio Santillana

Dengue is a mosquito-borne disease that threatens over half of the world’s population. Despite being endemic to more than 100 countries, government-led efforts and tools for timely identification and tracking of new infections are still lacking in many affected areas. Multiple methodologies that leverage the use of Internet-based data sources have been proposed as a way to complement dengue surveillance efforts. Among these, dengue-related Google search trends have been shown to correlate with dengue activity. We extend a methodological framework, initially proposed and validated for flu surveillance, to produce near real-time estimates of dengue cases in five countries/states: Mexico, Brazil, Thailand, Singapore and Taiwan. Our result shows that our modeling framework can be used to improve the tracking of dengue activity in multiple locations around the world.

4th August 2017 • comment

The Epidemiological evauation of vaccines course: efficacy, safety and policy

9th January 2017 • comment

 Objective: To characterize the relationship between tranexamic acid (TXA) use and patient outcomes in a severely injured civilian cohort, and to determine any differential effect between patients who presented with and without shock. Background: TXA has demonstrated survival benefits in trauma patients in an international randomized control trial and the military setting. The uptake of TXA into civilian major hemorrhage protocols (MHPs) has been variable. The evidence gap in mature civilian trauma systems is limiting the widespread use of TXA and its potential benefits on survival. Methods: Prospective cohort study of severely injured adult patients (Injury severity score > 15) admitted to a civilian trauma system during the adoption phase of TXA into the hospital's MHP. Outcomes measured were mortality, multiple organ failure (MOF), venous thromboembolism, infection, stroke, ventilator-free days (VFD), and length ofstay. Results: Patients receiving TXA (n = 160, 42%) were more severely injured, shocked, and coagulopathic on arrival. TXA was not independently associated with any change in outcome for either the overall or nonshocked cohorts. In multivariate analysis, TXA was independently associated with a reduction in MOF [odds ratio (OR) = 0.27, confidence interval (CI): 0.10–0.73, P = 0.01] and was protective for adjusted all-cause mortality (OR = 0.16 CI: 0.03–0.86, P = 0.03) in shocked patients. Conclusions: TXA as part of a major hemorrhage protocol within a mature civilian trauma system provides outcome benefits specifically for severely injured shocked patients. 

21st June 2016 • comment

Disease amenable to surgical intervention accounts for 11-15 % of world disability and there is increasing interest in surgery as a global public health issue. National HealthStrategic Plans (NHSPs) reflect countries' long-term health priorities, plans and targets. These plans were analysed to assess the prioritisation of surgery as a public health issue inAfrica.NHSPs of 43 independent Sub-Saharan African countries available in the public domain in March 2014 in French or English were searched electronically for key terms: surg*, ortho*, trauma, cancer, appendic*, laparotomy, HIV, tuberculosis, malaria. They were then searched manually for disease prevalence, targets, and human resources.19 % of NHSPs had no mentionof surgery or surgical conditions. 63 % had five or less mentions of surgery. HIV and malaria had 3772 mentions across all the policies, compared to surgery with only 376 mentions. Trauma had 239 mentions, while the common surgical conditions of appendicitis, laparotomy and hernia had no mentions at all. Over 95 % of NHSPs specifically mentioned the prevalence of HIV, tuberculosis, malaria, infant mortality and maternal mortality. Whereas, the most commonly mentioned surgical condition for which a prevalence was given was trauma, in only 47 % of policies. All NHSPs had plans and measurable targets for the reduction of HIV and tuberculosis. Of the total 4064 health targets, only 2 % were related to surgical conditions or surgical care. 33 % of policies had no surgical targets.NHSPs are the best available measure of health service and planning priorities. It is clear from our findings that surgery is poorly represented and that surgical conditions and surgical treatment are not widely recognised as a public health priority. Greater prioritisation of surgery in national health strategic policies is required to build resilient surgical systems. Read the full article here.

21st June 2016 • comment

Background Trauma has become a worldwide pandemic. Without dedicated public health interventions, fatal injuries will rise 40% and become the 4th leading cause of death by 2030, with the burden highest in low-income and middle-income countries (LMICs). The aim of this study was to estimate the prevalence of traumatic injuries and injury-related deaths in low-resource countries worldwide, using population-based data from the Surgeons OverSeas Assessment of Surgical Need (SOSAS), a validated survey tool.

21st June 2016 • comment

Traumatic injury affects nearly 5.8 million people annually and causes 10% of the world's deaths. In this study we aimed to estimate injury prevalence, to describe risk-factors and mechanisms of injury, and to estimate the number of injury-related deaths in Nepal, a low-income South Asian country.

16th June 2016 • comment

Traumatic injuries are an important cause of disability and mortality worldwide and more than 90% of injury-related deaths occur in low-income and middle-income countries. Despite its overall significance, little information exists about the burden of injuries in developing countries. We aim to estimate the prevalence of traumatic injuries, describe injury mechanisms, and assess the degree of associated disability in Sierra Leone.

16th June 2016 • comment

The KIM: The Key Informant Method (KIM)

by Global Musculoskeletal

The Key Informant Method (KIM) is is an approach to identifying children with disabilities in the community through trained community volunteers, known as Key Informants (KIs). KIM is an evolving method that has been used by ICED in a number of projects, supported by CBM.

2nd June 2016 • comment

Purpose: To develop a conceptual model representing the impact of musculoskeletal impairments (MSIs) in the lives of children in Malawi. Method: A total of 169 children with MSIs (CMSIs), family and other community members participated in 57 interviews, focus groups and observations. An inductive approach to data analysis was used to conceptualise the impact of MSIs in children’s day-to-day lives. Results: The main themes that emerged were Indignity, Exclusion, Pain and Hunger. Indignity represents various affronts to children’s sense of inherent equal worth as human beings, for example when bullied by peers. Exclusion refers to CMSIs being excluded from three core daily activities: school, play and household chores. Some CMSIs experienced Pain, for example as an outcome of striving to participate. Children with severe mobility impairments were at increased risk of Hunger, having less access to food outside the home and placing a burden of care on the family that could restrict household productivity. Household Poverty was therefore included in the model, as this household impact was inseparable from the impact on CMSIs. Conclusion: It is recommended that rehabilitation interventions are planned and evaluated with consideration to their impact on Exclusion, Indignity, Pain, Hunger and Household Poverty using multi-faceted partnerships.

2nd June 2016 • comment

Accurate information on the prevalence and causes of musculoskeletal impairment (MSI) is lacking in low income countries. We present a new survey methodology that is based on sound epidemiological principles and is linked to the World Health Organisation's International Classification of Functioning.

2nd June 2016 • comment

Objective: To estimate disability from the remainder of musculoskeletal (MSK) disorders (categorised as other MSK) not covered by the estimates made specifically for osteoarthritis (OA), rheumatoid arthritis (RA), gout, low back pain and neck pain, as part of the Global Burden of Disease (GBD) 2010 study.

25th May 2016 • comment

Objective: To estimate the global burden of hip and knee osteoarthritis (OA) as part of the Global Burden of Disease 2010 study and to explore how the burden of hip and knee OA compares with other conditions.

25th May 2016 • comment

Objectives: To estimate the global burden of rheumatoid arthritis (RA), as part of the Global Burden of Disease 2010 study of 291 conditions and how the burden of RA compares with other conditions.

25th May 2016 • comment

The objective of this paper is to provide an overview of methods used for estimating the burden from musculoskeletal (MSK) conditions in the Global Burden of Diseases 2010 study. It should be read in conjunction with the disease-specific MSK papers published in Annals of Rheumatic Diseases.

25th May 2016 • comment

Reliable estimates of disease burden support rational allocation of financial and human resources. Measurement is a powerful force for change as 'what gets measured gets done'. The global burden of musculoskeletal disease studies ensures visibility of these highly prevalent, disabling diseases. Now we must act to reduce disease burden.

25th May 2016 • comment

Development of real-time tracking tools to monitor dengue


Real-time dengue surveillance is critical for identifying areas where transmission is ongoing or likely to occur so that interventions can be optimized. Sophisticated new tools can help - and so can you.

7th April 2016 • comment

Visceral leishmaniasis: what are the needs for diagnosis, treatment and control?

by François Chappuis, Shyam Sundar, Asrat Hailu, Hashim Ghalib, Suman Rijal, Rosanna W. Peeling
23rd July 2012 • comment