Cohort Event Monitoring of Artemisinin combination therapies (ACTs)

Malaria is a leading cause of mortality and morbidity in Zimbabwe. Due to the increase in cases of resistance to anti-malarials such as chloroquine, the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the Ministry of Health and Child Welfare (of Zimbabwe) is now promoting the use of artemisinin combination therapies (ACTs) for the treatment of uncomplicated acute falciparum malaria. Although ACTs are known to be safe and effective, their safety under large-scale operational use has not been fully assessed particularly among children and pregnant women. This project aims to assess the safety of ACTs among the Zimbabwean population.

Cohort Event Monitoring is a method where information is collected, with focus on events, an all patients in a group being treated with a medicine or group of medicines. The cohort is selected without bias from all patients being treated with the monitored medicine, and the events include also incidents, not only adverse drug reactions (ADRs)

The specific objectives of this project are to:

      •  Detect signals of unrecognised reactions.
      • Identify interactions with other medicines, complementary and alternative medicines and foods
      • Identify risk factors so that they can be avoided.
      • Assess the safety of ACTs in pregnancy and lactation
      • Provide evidence for effective risk management i.e benefit/harm assessment.

Future projects:

      • Cohort Event Monitoring of Anti-tubercle and antiretroviral medicines in the public sector in Zimbabwe.
      • Post-market surveillance of antiretroviral and anti-tubercle medicines in Zimbabwe.