Feature page


Many 15–19 year-olds in sub-Saharan Africa are at risk of HIV/STIs and unplanned pregnancies because of multiple partnerships and insufficient condom and other contraceptive use. However, in many countries, trends are moving in a favourable direction. 796–807

Multiple opportunities for ultrasound training in LMICs are represented in the literature. The majority involve workshops for non-specialty practitioners. Regulation and quality control of training in ultrasound skills can be improved. 808–819


Gender differences in experiences of HIV services relate more to social than health system factors. 820–826

Comparative results from two surveys done in the same districts in Zimbabwe in 2007 and 2009 indicate an impressive increase in HIV testing and some reduction in risky sexual practices. 827–835

In rural Uganda, mortality among HIV-infected children is highest among those younger than 2 years. Efforts to prevent mother to child transmission of HIV and ensure early HIV diagnosis and treatment must be intensified. 836–843

Self-assessment of health strongly predicts mortality within 4 years of follow up in rural South Africa, even after controls for socio-economic status, HIV status and participation in an ART programme are included in the model. 844–853


The continuous success and safety of amodiaquine in Zanzibar might be partially related with the fact that the frequency of CYP1A1/CYP1B1 fast metabolisers there is low, hence lowering the risk of adverse events. 854–857

Malaria and anaemia risk factors, and the protective associations with ITN use, vary according to malaria transmission settings in Kenyan school children. Malaria and anaemia control efforts should consider such heterogeneities. 858–870


In Madagascar a positive TST result in schoolchildren aged from 6 to 7 years indicates a latent or active TB infection. TST may be exploited to carry out screening in first-year schoolchildren. 871–876

Diabetes and pulmonary tuberculosis are associated diseases, and culture-confirmed TB patients with diabetes co-morbidity more often experience fever and have a higher acute phase response. 877–883

The new diagnostic pathway is an improvement for HIV prevalent populations in resource-constrained settings in expediting the diagnosis of smear-negative pulmonary tuberculosis with accuracy. It is not without operational constraints. 884–895


The MoH of Togo and partners conducted a nationwide integrated NTDprevalence survey to define the need for public health interventions using an innovative mapping protocol. 896–903

Verbal autopsy

Mortality statistics based on verbal autopsies must be carefully interpreted: neither PCVA nor InterVA results represent a gold standard. Determining malaria as COD might cause higher discrepancies in holoendemic-malaria-regions than elsewhere. 904–913


The SMART-COP score should replace the PSI in tropical Australia for pneumonia risk stratification in the emergency department. It performed well and is both simpler and more sensitive than the PSI score. The SMARTACOP should no longer be recommended. 914–919

Mass drug administration

Studies in Cameroon, Nigeria and Uganda reveal that efforts to increase compliance with ivermectin treatment should focus on providing health education to youth and females. Health education should also highlight the benefits of taking ivermectin. 920–930

International aid

From aid to development effectiveness, bottom-up approaches to policy-making and behaviour change are needed for further improvement. Self-learning mechanisms should be promoted and complexity of aid better taken into account. 931–933