Promoting the Diagnosis, Treatment and Prevention of Chagas Disease


Proposed working groups for achieving revised London Declaration milestones for Chagas Disease.  Based on “Tarleton, RL, Gürtler, RE, Urbina, JA, Ramsey, J, Viotti, R.  2014.  Chagas Disease and the London Declaration on Neglected Tropical Diseases.  PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases,8 (10) e3219.

This proposal emerged from discussions initiated by the Chagas Disease Foundation and held at the International Congress on Parasitology in Mexico City (ICOPA 2014).  Unfortunately, no funding was was obtained to pursue these efforts.

  1. “Policy Development Working Group

Charge: Develop consensus policies for obtaining reliable, representative surveys to estimate infected people (with and without treatment), house infestation with target vector species, and coverage and effectiveness of control efforts in all affected countries.

2015 Goal: Define infrastructure, methods and resources needed to collect, store and access information.

Cost:  Administrative only

  1. Communications/Monitoring Working Group

Charge: Obtain commitments from health ministries from all endemic countries to implement disease and vector control policies that are developed in consultation with the scientific community, patient groups and other non-government organizations.

2015 Goal: Establish communication path with all health ministers in Latin America;  Work with Policy Development Working Group to communicate agreed upon policies to appropriate governmental offices; Establish protocol to monitor follow-through on policies.

Cost:  Administrative only

  1. Screening Promotion Working Group

Charge: Implement routine periodic diagnostic screening of all primary school-aged children and all women of reproductive age living or having lived in areas where transmission of T. cruzi is possible or likely.

2015 Goal: Collect country-specific data on current practices; identify needs for implementing periodic screening in each country.

 Cost:  Administrative only for data collection phase.

  1. Treatment Policies Working Group – Rodolfo Viotti and Sheba Meymandi

Charge: Develop a consensus document on best practices for treating and monitoring treatment outcomes for those with T. cruzi infection.  Develop programs for the disseminating these best practices to health professionals for implementation.

2015 Goals:  Establish working group and generate best practices document

 Cost:  Administrative only

  1. Drug Production and Access Working Group – Julio Urbina

Charge:  Obtain an accurate assessment of availability of benznidazole and nifurtimox, including current commercial, government and non-governmental stockpiles, country-by-country planned distribution of those stores, anticipated future needs, and the resources available and required to make treatment readily available to all infected individuals.  Determine the country-by-country cost of treatment and the funds available and/or needed to cover these costs. Develop mechanisms to track drug delivery and usage from the federal stockpiles to the province/state/municipal level. Catalogue new drug discovery efforts and

2015 Goals:  Generate preliminary report on drug supply and distribution.  Identify methods for improving access to drugs.

Cost:  Administrative only

  1. Diagnostics Working Group

Charge: Facilitate the development of better diagnostic tools for Chagas disease

2015 Goal: Identify funding and convene a meeting of researchers, clinicians, industry representatives and non-governmental organizations to assess options for diagnosing T. cruzi infection and to develop proposals to improve the quality and lower the cost of screening and diagnostic assays for T. cruzi infection.

Cost:  $40,000 minimum

  1. Vector Control Operational Capacity Working Group

Charge:  Develop a reliable assessment of the operational capacity of triatomine vector control programs, program strategies, where and how often control operations are conducted, and methods used to monitor their effectiveness.

2015 Goal: Determine how to acquire, store and update information on vector control efforts.

Cost:  Administrative only

  1. Information Systems Working Group

Charge: Develop information systems to inventory and track all screening, treatment, and vector control efforts at the local, state or province, national, and international levels. Facilitate ease of access to, and updating and validation of assembled data.

Cost:  none for 2015

  1. Education and Health Communications Working Group

Charge:  Design education programs to increase acceptability, coverage, and sustainability of control efforts.  Integrate Chagas disease into clinical care systems in all countries using workshops, courses, and continuing education, and promote equal access to diagnosis and clinical care.

Cost:  none for 2015

  1. Research and Development Working Group

Charge: Facilitate research and development efforts in Chagas disease by assessing research needs and priorities, cataloging current research and development efforts, increasing collaborations and minimizing overlap, facilitating interactions among research and development groups and spearheading funding requests for the highest impact collaborative projects.

Cost:  none for 2015


Budget estimates for 2015 milestones

Secretariat salary and clerical/communication costs                $80,000/yr for 2 yrs

(oversee all “Administrative only” tasks indicated above)

Other data collections costs                                                             $50,000

Meeting to evaluate diagnostic/screening assay options          $40,000

Total                                                                                             $250,000