Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.12105/7431
Chagas screening and treatment among Bolivians living in Madrid, Spain: The need for an official protocol
PLoS One. 2019 Mar 8;14(3):e0213577.
BACKGROUND: It is estimated that around 52,000 people live with Chagas in Spain, but only 10% have been diagnosed. Migrants from Bolivia bear the burden of Chagas infection in Spain. However, little is known about their current management of Chagas diagnosis and treatment patterns. This study aimed to assess the Chagas related disease perception and health behaviour of Bolivians living in Madrid. METHODS AND PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: For a first time, a cross-sectional survey about Chagas' knowledges and practices was carried out in Madrid, Spain. A total of 376 Bolivians were interviewed about their Chagas health-seeking behaviour. Differences between men and women were assessed Most of Bolivians living in Madrid have access to the public health services. 44% of Bolivians included in the survey had a Chagas screening test done. However, while women did their test for Chagas mostly at hospital (59.2%), men also used the community campaigns (17.5%) and blood banks (14.3%). The prevalence reported among Bolivians tested was 27.7%. Unfortunately, more than half of those reporting a positive test for Chagas did not begin or completed treatment. Only 45.7% of positives reported having had their children tested for Chagas. CONCLUSIONS: Despite the increase in the number of Chagas diagnoses done in Madrid, the number of Bolivians who tested positive and then started or completed treatment remains very low. The fact that most Bolivians' access to the health system is through the primary healthcare services should be considered for improving management of cases and follow-up of treatment adherence. Local and national protocol establishing guidelines for the screening and treatment of Chagas disease would help improving case detection and management at all levels of the healthcare system.
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