Socio-economic and environmental risk factors for NIDs such as trachoma and STH are high in Vaupés among indigenous communities. These include faraway water sources, lack of facial cleanliness and handwashing, soil floors, animal/insect vectors in homes, and low use of footwear. Only 58% of children between 5 and 14 years old in the study group had received deworming in the last six months, which increases the risk of STH infections. Trachoma prevalence was 21.7% in 2013, and facial cleanliness and environmental strategies have not proven successful in the region (Miller et al., 2020).
The Vaupés health department’s proposed inter-sectoral approach includes mass antibiotic and deworming mass drug administration (MDA) campaigns, environmental interventions, and behavior change strategies to promote hygiene. These strategies need to be contextualized to the social, political, and health situation of the indigenous communities to be successful.
This study aimed to co-design a series of integrated strategies with key stakeholders and the indigenous community. When planned collaboratively, these strategies will improve the quality of health interventions and services provided to indigenous communities in Vaupés and align with the priorities of government, participating organizations, and communities.
Miller, H. A., De Mesa, C. B. L., Talero, S. L., Cárdenas, M. M., Ramírez, S. P., Moreno-Montoya, J., Porras, A., & Trujillo-Trujillo, J. (2020). Prevalence of trachoma and associated factors in the rural area of the department of Vaupés, Colombia. In PLoS ONE (Vol. 15, Issue 5).
The primary objective of this study was to identify which health promotion and disease prevention strategies can be integrated to reduce the prevalence of trachoma and STH infections in the indigenous communities of the Cubiyú River area. A focus on reducing the prevalence of ectoparasite infections emerged during the study.