Spatial epidemiological approaches to inform leptospirosis surveillance and control: a systematic review and critical appraisal of methods

Dhewantara, P. W., Lau, C. L., Allan, K. J. , Hu, W., Zhang, W., Mamun, A. A. and Soares Magalhães, R. J. (2019) Spatial epidemiological approaches to inform leptospirosis surveillance and control: a systematic review and critical appraisal of methods. Zoonoses and Public Health, 66(2), pp. 185-206. (doi: 10.1111/zph.12549) (PMID:30593736)

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Leptospirosis is a global zoonotic disease that the transmission is driven by complex geographical and temporal variation in demographics, animal hosts and socioecological factors. This results in complex challenges for the identification of high‐risk areas. Spatial and temporal epidemiological tools could be used to support leptospirosis control programs, but the adequacy of its application has not been evaluated. We searched literature in six databases including PubMed, Web of Science, EMBASE, Scopus, SciELO and Zoological Record to systematically review and critically assess the use of spatial and temporal analytical tools for leptospirosis and to provide general framework for its application in future studies. We reviewed 115 articles published between 1930 and October 2018 from 41 different countries. Of these, 65 (56.52%) articles were on human leptospirosis, 39 (33.91%) on animal leptospirosis and 11 (9.5%) used data from both human and animal leptospirosis. Spatial analytical (n = 106) tools were used to describe the distribution of incidence/prevalence at various geographical scales (96.5%) and to explored spatial patterns to detect clustering and hot spots (33%). A total of 51 studies modelled the relationships of various variables on the risk of human (n = 31), animal (n = 17) and both human and animal infection (n = 3). Among those modelling studies, few studies had generated spatially structured models and predictive maps of human (n = 2/31) and animal leptospirosis (n = 1/17). In addition, nine studies applied time‐series analytical tools to predict leptospirosis incidence. Spatial and temporal analytical tools have been greatly utilized to improve our understanding on leptospirosis epidemiology. Yet the quality of the epidemiological data, the selection of covariates and spatial analytical techniques should be carefully considered in future studies to improve usefulness of evidence as tools to support leptospirosis control. A general framework for the application of spatial analytical tools for leptospirosis was proposed.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:The authors have indicated that no explicit funding was received for this work. PWD received PhD scholarship from Australia Awards ‐ Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) Australia. CLL was supported by an Australian National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Fellowship (1109035).
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Allan, Dr Kathryn
Authors: Dhewantara, P. W., Lau, C. L., Allan, K. J., Hu, W., Zhang, W., Mamun, A. A., and Soares Magalhães, R. J.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Biodiversity, One Health & Veterinary Medicine
Journal Name:Zoonoses and Public Health
ISSN (Online):1863-2378
Published Online:28 December 2018
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2018 Blackwell Verlag GmbH
First Published:First published in Zoonoses and Public Health 66(2):185-206
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the publisher copyright policy

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