SMC research

Malaria Consortium conducts high quality implementation and operational research that provides evidence for programme staff, Ministries of Health and partners to make informed decisions to improve SMC programme performance and quality of SMC implementation, for example by driving adaptation and innovation. 

We conduct studies that focus on country-specific research questions as well as research answering questions of global significance. Key to our research are our relationships with international, national and local stakeholders, including academic partners, national malaria control programmes and the local communities themselves. 


Using the role model approach to improve administration of SMC drugs in Burkina Faso, Chad and Togo

Seasonal malaria chemoprevention is delivered in monthly cycles during the malaria season using two antimalarial drugs: sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine (SP) and amodiaquine (AQ), or ‘SPAQ’. The role model approach is a community-driven behaviour change strategy that identifies existing strengths or solutions among individuals in a community, which are then shared with other community members to bring about positive changes in behaviour. We explored this approach to address the challenges associated with SPAQ administration in Burkina Faso, Chad and Togo, and to find existing, local solutions for improvement. 

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Assessing the feasibility and protective efficacy of implementing seasonal malaria chemoprevention in Mozambique

Between 2020-21, SMC was implemented for the first time in Mozambique, in Nampula province. Implementation research with mixed-methods was conducted to assess the feasibility and acceptability of implementing SMC in this new context. Drug efficacy and impact on malaria morbidity and mortality will also be explored. 

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Co-implementation of SMC and vitamin A distribution: a pilot study in Nigeria 

Our study evaluates the feasibility and acceptability of integrating vitamin A distribution with SMC administration. It is relevant in the context of the global discourse on sustainability and health systems strengthening, as integrated delivery of public health interventions has the potential to leverage synergies across programmes. 

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Tailoring SMC to different malaria transmission contexts: a pilot implementation study in Burkina Faso

Our study explores the feasibility and acceptability of expanding SMC to five monthly treatment cycles in a health district where the rainy season typically exceeds four months. The study feeds into the global policy debate around varying timing and frequency of SMC implementation to maximise impact.

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Evaluating the impact of a geospatial platform on the quality of coverage data for SMC in Sokoto State, Nigeria

We are planning to pilot the use of a spatial intelligence tool called Reveal in Sokoto, Nigeria. Spatial intelligence tools use satellite imagery to identify residential structures, which has the potential to improve campaign planning, delivery and evaluation. In particular, we are interested in evaluating whether Reveal enables community distributors to collect more accurate, complete and timely coverage data. For this project, we are partnering with Akros, a company that developed a precursor to Reveal called mSpray® for use in indoor residual spraying. 

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Understanding barriers to delivery and feasibility and acceptability of extending SMC to children under ten in Chad

Our study seeks to understand common barriers to SMC delivery according to protocol, in particular around community distributors’ ability to determine age eligibility criteria. It also explores the acceptability of extending SMC to children under ten among different types of stakeholders, which is relevant in the context of the global policy debate about extending the age range of SMC beyond children under five. 

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Assessing adherence to infection prevention and control measures for seasonal malaria chemoprevention during COVID-19

Our mixed-methods, cross-sectional study aims to explore CDs’ adherence to IPC practices for SMC during the COVID-19 pandemic in Burkina Faso, Chad and Nigeria. 

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