In collaboration with the Global Health Institute of UAntwerpen, staff of the National Institute for Medical Research, Tanga, initiated a clinical research study in schools in north eastern Tanzania. Malaria is a major public health problem in Tanzania, highly affecting school children. It has a considerable impact on their attendance and cognitive abilities.

During several visits, our team tested 1550 enrolled school children for malaria, haemoglobin, soil transmitted helminths, as well as cognitive and psychomotor ability. Enrolment started on March 26th, 2019 and completed on April 13th, 2019 across the seven primary schools. About 958 households in the selected schools were reached and interviewed for social demographics and economic characteristics. During follow up visits, conducted four monthly, the 1550 children are assessed clinically and blood samples were collected for testing malaria.

The study has now completed five rounds of scheduled visits and will finalize the last round in December 2020. In addition, the study also assesses the acceptability, cost-effectiveness and feasibility of IPTsc as part of a more comprehensive school children health package.

This study is funded by the Flemish Interuniversity Council (VLIR-UOS), Belgium, TEAM initiative, grant number TZ2017TEA451A102.

The short video clip, shot in January 2020, gives a good representation of the project's activities in the schools.

Malaria study in Tanzania