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São Tomé, Sao Tome and Principe

Chu T.B.,Taipei Medical University | Liao C.W.,Taipei Medical University | Liao C.W.,Juntendo University | Huang Y.C.,Taipei Medical University | And 7 more authors.
Iranian Journal of Parasitology

Background: A parasitological survey of Schistosoma haematobium and S. intercalatum infection among primary schoolchildren in capital area of Democratic Republic of São Tomé and Príncipe (DRSTP) was undertaken. Methods: Subjects with positive infection were confirmed by the detection of S. haematobium ova in the urine or S. intercalatum ova in the stool by using centrifugation concentration or merthiolate-iodineformalin concentration method. Totally, 252 urine and stool samples, respectively, were obtained from apparently healthy schoolchildren, of which 121 from boys (9.8 ± 1.4 yr) and 131 from girls (9.7 ± 1.3 yr). Results: None of participating schoolchildren were found having S. haematobium ova in the urinary specimen. While, among 4 primary schools studied, only schoolchildren from Saint Marçal were detected with S. intercalatum ova in the fecal specimen, making the overall prevalence of S. intercalatum infection among schoolchildren was 2.4% (6/252) and girls had insignificantly higher prevalence (3.1%, 4/131) than that (1.7%, 2/121) in boys (χ2 = 0.5, P = 0.5). Conclusion: Water control and sanitation as well as snails eliminated by molluscicides are urgently needed to reduce S. intercalatum infection in DRSTP inhabitants. Source

Viberg N.,Karolinska Institutet | Forsberg B.C.,Karolinska Institutet | Borowitz M.,Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development | Molin R.,Ministry of Health and Social Affairs
Health Policy

Long waiting times for health care is an important health policy issue in many countries, and many have introduced some form of national waiting time guarantees. International comparison of waiting times are critical for countries to improve policy and for patients to be able to make informed choices, especially in Europe, where patients have the right to seek care in other countries if there is undue delay.The objective of this study was to describe how countries measure waiting times and to assess whether waiting times can be compared internationally. Twenty-three OECD countries were included. Information was collected through scientific articles, official and unofficial documents and web pages. Fifteen of the 23 countries monitor and publish national waiting time statistics and have some form of waiting time guarantees. There are significant differences in how waiting times are measured: whether they measure the "ongoing" or "completed" waiting period what kind of care the patient is waiting for; the parameters used; and where in the patient journey the measurement begins. Current national waiting time statistics are of limited use for comparing health care availability among the various countries due to the differences in measurements and data collection. Different methodological issues must be taken into account when making such cross-country comparisons.Within the given context of national sovereignty of health systems it would be desirable if countries could collaborate in order to facilitate international comparisons. Such comparisons would be of benefit to all involved in the process of continuous improvement of health services. They would also benefit patients who seek cross-border alternatives for their care. © 2013 The Authors. Source

Fan C.-K.,Taipei Medical University | Lee L.-W.,Taipei Medical University | Liao C.-W.,Taipei Medical University | Huang Y.-C.,Taipei Medical University | And 8 more authors.
Parasites and Vectors

Background: The status of Toxoplasma gondii infection among primary schoolchildren (PSC) of the Democratic Republic of So Tom and Prncipe (DRSTP), West Africa, remains unknown to date. Methods: A serologic survey and risk factors associated T. gondii infection among PSC in the DRSTP was assessed by the latex agglutination (LA) test and a questionnaire interview including parents occupation, various uncomfortable symptoms, histories of eating raw or undercooked food, drinking unboiled water, and raising pets, was conducted in October 2010. Schoolchildren from 4 primary schools located in the capital areas were selected, in total 255 serum samples were obtained by venipuncture, of which 123 serum samples were obtained from boys (9.8 1.4 yrs) and 132 serum samples were obtained from girls (9.7 1.3 yrs). Results: The overall seroprevalence of T. gondii infection was 63.1% (161/255). No significant gender difference in seroprevalence was found between boys (62.6%, 77/123) and girls (63.6%, 84/132) (p = 0.9). The older age group of 10 years had insignificantly higher seroprevalence (69.9%, 58/83) than that of the younger age group of 8 year olds (67.7%, 21/31) (p = 0.8). It was noteworthy that the majority of seropositive PSC (75.8%, 122/161) had high LA titers of ?1: 1024, indirectly indicating acute or repeated Toxoplasma infection. Parents whose jobs were non-skilled workers (73.1%) showed significantly higher seroprevalence than that of semiskilled- (53.9%) or skilled workers (48.8%) (p<0.05). Children who had a history of raising cats also showed significantly higher seroprevalence than those who did not (p<0.001). Children who claimed to have had recent ocular manifestation or headache, i.e. within 1 month, seemed to haveinsignificantly higher seroprevalence than those who did not (p>0.05). Conclusions: Parents' educational level and cats kept indoors seemed to be the high risk factors for PSC in acquisition of T. gondii infection. While, ocular manifestation and/or headache of PSC should be checked for the possibility of being T. gondii elicited. Measures such as improving environmental hygiene and intensive educational intervention to both PSC and their parents should be performed immediately so as to reduce T. gondii infection of DRSTP inhabitants including PSC and adults. © 2012 Fan et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. Source

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