Lymphatic filariasis: managing morbidity and preventing disability: an aide-mémoire for national program managers, 2nd ed. World Health Organization, 2021
Since the first edition of Lymphatic Filariasis: Managing Morbidity and Preventing Disability: An Aide-Memoire for National Program Managers was published by the World Health Organization in 2013, significant progress has been made in reducing filarial infection globally and there has been a groundswell of support for expanding availability to morbidity management and disability prevention (MMDP) services for individuals suffering from the chronic manifestations of lymphatic filariasis (LF). Morbidity management and disability prevention remains a critically important aspect of the Global Program to Eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis, particularly as countries approach validation of elimination of LF as a public health problem.
The new edition has been developed to make widely available to program managers, health care workers in endemic settings, academic researchers, and other key partners, a concise source of information on strategies for MMDP for LF. It is a product of efforts to elaborate and concepts and approaches introduced in the previous edition, with a focus on ensuring that countries have the tools necessary to provide the essential package of care for LF.
In an effort to assist member states in expanding and evaluating MMDP programs, WHO has developed a toolkit of materials to provide expanded clinical, operational, and managerial standard operating procedures for planning and implementing morbidity management and disability prevention activities.
This manual is the result of collaboration between the WHO Department of Control of Neglected Tropical Diseases and the WHO Department of Emergency and Essential Surgical Care. Updates reflect new published WHO guidance and evidence to further develop concepts and approaches for implementing and monitoring MMDP programs in endemic settings, such as:
- Harmonized terminology and definitions related to morbidity management and disability prevention
- Updated practical information for clinical management, delivery, and evaluation of clinical services for filarial lymphedema
- Outlined new and promising therapeutics for treatment of LF infection and lymphedema management
- Aligned morbidity management and disability prevention standard operating procedures with other relevant initiatives (e.g. SDGs and UHC) and programs (e.g. global surgery, WASH, and case management for other NTDs and other conditions)
- Elaborated indicators and processes related to MMDP for requesting validation of the elimination of LF as a public health problem
Further, minor revisions, including clarification of wording and corrections (e.g. grammatical and typographical) have been made throughout the manual. Some new figures and tables were added to the manual based on feedback from reviewers and some have been modified for clarification. Additionally, three new tools are available as web annexes to help countries plan and extend availability of MMDP and document criteria for validation of LF as a public health problem.
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