The epidemiology of trachoma in Mozambique: results of 96 population-based prevalence surveys


Surveys are needed to guide trachoma control efforts in Mozambique, with WHO guidelines for intervention based on the prevalence of trachomatous inflammation-follicular (TF) in children aged 1-9 years, and the prevalence of trichiasis in adults aged 15 years and above.

Between July 2012 and May 2015, we carried out cross-sectional surveys in 96 evaluation units (EUs) covering 137 districts. A total of 269,217 individuals were enumerated and 249,318 people were examined using the WHO simplified trachoma grading system. Overall, 102,641 children aged 1-9 years, and 122,689 individuals aged 15 years and above were examined. The prevalence of TF in children aged 1-9 years was ≥10% in 12 EUs, composed of 20 districts, covering an estimated total population of 2,455,852. These districts require mass distribution of azithromycin for at least 3 years before re-survey. The TF prevalence in children was 5.0-9.9% in 17 EUs (28 districts, total population 3,753,039). 22 EUs (34 districts) had trichiasis prevalences ≥0.2% in adults 15 years and above, and will require public health action to provide surgical services addressing the backlog of trichiasis.

Younger age, more children resident in the household, and living in a household that had an unimproved latrine or no latrine facility, were independently associated with an increased odds of TF in children aged 1-9 years. Trachoma represents a significant public health problem in many areas of Mozambique.

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Date published
14 September 2017
Journal article