Requests for malaria prevention advice to Public Health England, Malaria Reference Laboratory: A retrospective observational study.


Godbole, G; Blaze, M; Smith, V; Whitty, CJ; Chiodini, PL; (2013) Requests for malaria prevention advice to Public Health England, Malaria Reference Laboratory: A retrospective observational study. Travel medicine and infectious disease. ISSN 1477-8939 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tmaid.2013.05.001

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Abstract

BACKGROUND: The Malaria Reference Laboratory (MRL) provides a specialist advisory service for complex queries from healthcare professionals. This study was conducted to examine the types of queries that general practitioners and nurses ask around malaria prophylaxis, to identify issues which are not obvious from existing easily available sources. METHODS: We reviewed all the faxed requests received over a period of 6 months at the MRL. RESULTS: There were a total of 608 queries (104 concerning children) relating to 450 travellers. 98% of requests were from general practice (GP or practice nurse). The most common enquiries were about travellers to multiple destinations (95/529, 17.96%), prolonged duration of travel (70/529, 13.23%), the immunosuppressed (38/529, 7.18%), potential drug interactions (69/529, 13.04%), pregnancy and conception (36, 6.81%). 79/529 queries related to patients with multiple conditions requiring expert advice from the MRL. 27% of the enquiries could have been answered by consulting the UK malaria prophylaxis guidelines available on the MRL site. CONCLUSION: Most queries where practitioners requested help were not easily answered with existing guidelines. Pregnancy and epilepsy are areas where guidance needs strengthening. Difficulties for practitioners were multifactorial, it would be difficult to address all scenarios in guidelines without making them unwieldy.

Item Type: Article
Faculty and Department: Faculty of Infectious and Tropical Diseases > Dept of Clinical Research
Faculty of Infectious and Tropical Diseases
Faculty of Public Health and Policy > Dept of Social and Environmental Health Research
Research Centre: Malaria Centre
PubMed ID: 23735685
Web of Science ID: 323996100001
URI: http://researchonline.lshtm.ac.uk/id/eprint/967487

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