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Swiss TPH News, November 2020
Home-based HIV testing is a promising solution to address the HIV epidemic
Ending the HIV Epidemic in Africa
While the COVID-19 pandemic still holds the world firmly in its grip, HIV continues to be a major global health issue, with 1.7 million new infections in 2019 alone. In Africa, a part of the world that shoulders most of the HIV burden, home-based HIV testing now proves to be a promising measure in the fight against HIV. In two recent studies published in The Lancet HIV and the Journal of International AIDS Society, Swiss TPH and partners found that HIV self-tests during home-based testing campaigns significantly increased people’s awareness of their HIV status, particularly in the most remote regions. » Read more
Nurses dispensing medication
Leprosy Elimination in Reach
Post-exposure prophylaxis with a single dose of the antibiotic rifampicin is safe, can be integrated into different leprosy control programmes, and is generally well accepted by patients, their contacts, and healthcare workers. These are the results of the Leprosy Post-Exposure Prophylaxis (LPEP) programme published in The Lancet Global Health.
Farmers signing loan agreements
Seasonal Loans Reduce Poverty
Small-scale farmers, in particular those in developing countries, often struggle during the months before a harvest as farmer’s cash and grain supply begin to run low. A recent publication by Swiss TPH and partners found that seasonal loans are a feasible and welcomed solution to support farmers during the difficult "lean season" before a harvest.
Child sleeping under mosquito net
Improved Bed Nets for Malaria Control in Tanzania
Insecticide-treated bed nets are the most widely adopted preventive measure against malaria, and represent an effective form of prevention for at-risk populations. A project by Swiss TPH and partners evaluated the durability of different bed nets and found that those with more robust fabrics have a longer life-span, and could save nearly 20% of costs associated with purchasing bed nets each year.
Mother with child in Tanzania
Only One Third of Children Receive Adequate Malaria Care
Despite lots of progress made in the past decade, more than 270,000 children die from malaria each year. Most of these deaths could be avoided through timely diagnosis and treatment. Despite better availability of tests and medication, a new study shows that large gaps remain in the quality of malaria care for children. The study by Swiss TPH and partners was published in PLOS Medicine.
Nurse with HIV drugs
New Findings for Patients with Low HIV Viral Load
In a new study published in PLOS Medicine, Swiss TPH researchers and partners assessed if patients with a persisting low HIV viral load while taking first-line antiretroviral therapy (ART) benefited from switching to second-line ART. Findings show that switching patients resulted in a higher proportion of viral suppression, thus encouraging that the WHO guidelines lower the current viral load threshold.
Scientist in laboratory
Swiss TPH Receives an Increase in Funding from Basel Cantons
The governments of the cantons of Basel-Landschaft and Basel-Stadt have increased their annual funding to Swiss TPH from a joint amount of CHF 7.26 million per year to CHF 8 million. The total amount of CHF 32 million over the next 4 years will contribute to improving public and global health through excellence in research, education and services.
One Health. The Theory and Practice of Integrated Health Approaches
One Health has now expanded beyond discussion of emerging infectious diseases and zoonoses. Retaining its interdisciplinary focus, this new edition includes more noninfectious disease issues and a discussion on climate change alongside revised case studies and expanded methodology chapters to draw out implications for practice.
» Now available from CABI
Project Updates
Doctor examines child
Improving Health Care for Refugees
The “Digital System for a Better Health Care Management of Refugees” (SysRef) project aims to improve the quality of health care for refugees and displaced people in Chad and places with comparable circumstances. Financed by the
Stanley Thomas Johnson Foundation, the project is involved in the development and implementation of digital tools to deliver better health care management. This includes the improvement of diagnosis and treatment of infections and other health problems, the registration of vaccines and more.
» Read more
Kinase Inhibitors for Treatment of Tuberculosis
A recent research project funded by the Novartis Foundation for Medical-Biological Research uses Swiss TPH’s established in vitro granuloma model for tuberculosis (TB) to further knowledge of protective immune responses against Mycobacterium tuberculosis and to evaluate the efficacy of kinase inhibitors as host-directed therapy (HDT) agents, which could synergize with antibiotics, to improve TB treatment. » Read more
Skills building session at the 6th Global Symposium on Health Systems Rsearch 2020
Systems Thinking for Strengthening District Health Systems
The Systems Thinking for Strengthening District Health Systems initiative supports countries in applying systems thinking tools and practices to understand and intervene in their local health system. Funded by the Alliance for Health Policy and Systems Research (AHPSR), the initiative works with district and national health systems
and research institutions in Botswana, Pakistan and Timor-Leste to bring systems thinking to district health management. Swiss TPH supports the three countries in all activities. » Read more about Systems Thinking at Swiss TPH
Swiss TPH Remains Competence Centre for Epidemiological Outbreak Investigations
In Switzerland, foodborne infections such as listeriosis and salmonellosis or campylobacteriosis are under close surveillance by the Federal Office of Public Health (FOPH). Annually, one to three outbreaks of one of these diseases have been observed. Since 2012, Swiss TPH leads the Competence Centre for Epidemiological Outbreak Investigations (KEA) on behalf of the FOPH and has recently extended their contract for another year. » Read more
Girls laughing
Assessment of the ESA Commitment
The Eastern and Southern Africa (ESA) Commitment to comprehensive sexuality education and sexual and reproductive health services for adolescents and young people was initiated in 2013 by 20 ESA countries. The countries agreed to work collaboratively towards
a vision of young global citizens of the future, who are educated, healthy, resilient, and have capacity to contribute to their community and country. UNESCO assigned Swiss TPH to conduct an evaluation of the ESA Commitment and assess its effectiveness in achieving its targets. » Read more
Assessment of National Health Insurance Information Systems
There is a movement to apply digital technologies as a means of strengthening health systems in low- and middle-income countries, including innovations for demand generation, better management of information, and improved efficiency of health workers. A new project led by Swiss TPH on behalf of the Asian Development Bank aims to assess technologies applied by National Health Insurances (NHI) from the region and to provide policy advice to other NHI’s on technologies for the future. » Read more
Anaemia Prevention and Control
The World Bank mandated Swiss TPH to identify possible bottlenecks of anaemia prevention and control in the West Bank and Gaza. The assessment is carried out in collaboration with researchers from two experienced local organisations, the An Najah National University (NNU) and Palestine Technical College. » Read more
Nurse measuring blood pressure
Moldova: Reducing the Burden of NCDs
The Healthy Life project in Moldova starts with its second phase for another four years. Funded by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) and implemented by Swiss TPH, the project contributes to the improvement of the health and wellbeing of the Moldovan
population, especially in rural areas, through reducing the burden of NCDs. Phase 2 focuses on scaling up the lessons learnt by the project in phase 1 to the whole republic. » Read more about the project
Monitoring Review in Sao Tomé and Principe
Swiss TPH is conducting a monitoring review for Gavi that assesses the current status of recommendations from a Programme Capacity Assessment and identifies possible bottlenecks. » Read more
Impacts of COVID-19 in Malaysia
On behalf of the State Secretariat for Education, Research and Innovation SERI, Swiss TPH and local partner institutions are investigating how low-income urban communities in Malaysia have been affected by the COVID-19 crisis, with the aim to prevent inequities and improve the benefits from public health interventions.
Mobile Wastewater Testing for Outbreak Detection
Swiss TPH and partners are conducting a feasibility study in South Africa on mobile wastewater tasting for areas with limited or dysfunctional sewage systems to serve as an early warning system for infectious diseases outbreaks (including COVID-19) in remote and rural areas.The study is financed by SERI.
Upcoming Events
TIGER Closing Symposium, 13 November 2020
13 November 2020: Closing Symposium of the TIGER Project
TIGER is an EU-funded project between France, Germany and Switzerland to support the cross-boarder monitoring and control of the Asian tiger mosquito in the Upper Rhein region. At this one-day fully virtual symposium the project team will present the current situation on the spread of the tiger mosquito in the region, as well as the status of the project after 3 years.
Geneva Health Forum 16-18 November 2020
Geneva Health Forum

The GHF is going fully virtual and will be tackling, with its network of key actors in Geneva and beyond, the global health crisis that impacts all of us, without forgetting critical issues that are and will remain crucial global health challenges. Visit us at our virtual booth or join us in some of the 21 online sessions that will be broadcasted live during the 3 days event.
Swiss TPH Winter Symposium, 1 December 2020
Swiss TPH Winter Symposium: Reshaping Healthcare Supply Chains
Strong and resilient supply chains are at the core of health systems and achieving Universal Health Coverage. Join us virtually on 1 December to discuss innovative strategies and applications around the world. » Register now
ISEE Young 2021
Study with Us
Students talking
International Health Management
Strong managers and leaders are needed to ensure sustainable and equitable health systems that can respond to current and future health needs. The MBA in International Health Management programme seeks to create a new
generation of managers and leaders, building on their various skills sets and personalities in order to equip them for independent meso- and macro-level leadership positions by maintaining a global perspective and interdisciplinary approach to health. The MBA in International Health Management is taught in a blended-learning format. » Learn more about our MBA programme
Students discussing
Diploma of Advanced Studies Health Care and Management
The 14-week course provides international participants with the core competencies to understand and react to health challenges. They acquire a range of skills and knowledge needed to work as a member of a health management team, particularly in low- and middle-income societies. Participants benefit from engaging with experts from various fields, practical application and interactive training.
Child looking out if train window
Clinical Short Course on Travel Medicine
This advanced training course, aimed at tropical and travel medicine specialists as well as basic health care providers and pharmacists, provides participants with practical basics, updates them on travel-related health risks, prevention measures, current recommendations for vaccinations and malaria prophylaxis. The course will be online and in German.
Attention Health Care and Management Alumni!
We cordially invite you to the first ever HCM/HCMTC Alumni Reunion held virtually on 26 November 2020 via Zoom. » Register now
Latest Publications
Palmeirim MS, Bosch F, Ame SM, Ali SM, Hattendorf J, Keiser J. Efficacy, safety and acceptability of a new chewable formulation versus the solid tablet of mebendazole against hookworm infections in children: an open-label, randomized controlled trial. EClinicalMedicine. » Read the full article
Tan-Torres Edejer T, Hanssen O, Mirelman A, Verboom P, Lolong G, Watson OJ, Boulanger LL, Soucat A. Projected health-care resource needs for an effective response to COVID-19 in 73 low-income and middle-income countries: a modelling study. The Lancet Global Health. » Read the full article
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