Investigation of a possible malaria epidemic in an illegal gold mine in French Guiana: an original approach in the remote Amazonian forest
Le Tourneau, François Michel
De Laval, Franck
AffiliationUniv Arizona, IGLOBES
MetadataShow full item record
CitationDouine, M., Sanna, A., Hiwat, H., Briolant, S., Nacher, M., Belleoud, D., ... & De Laval, F. (2019). Investigation of a possible malaria epidemic in an illegal gold mine in French Guiana: an original approach in the remote Amazonian forest. Malaria journal, 18(1), 91.
Rights© The Author(s) 2019. This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
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AbstractBackground: In April 2017, Suriname's Ministry of Health alerted French Guiana's Regional Health Agency (RHA) about an increase of imported malaria cases among people coming from an illegal gold mining site called Sophie, in French Guiana, a French overseas territory located in the Amazonian forest. Methods: Due to safety issues and the remoteness of Sophie, the RHA requested the collaboration of the French Armed Forces for the epidemiological investigation. A medical unit, and six soldiers to ensure the security of the mission, were transported by helicopter. Results: During the investigation, two malaria episodes were diagnosed among 46 persons. Twenty-six of them were from Sophie, where PCR-Plasmodium prevalence was estimated at 60% (15/26). This result was concordant with previous studies revealing high malaria endemicity in the gold miner population. The increase of imported cases in Suriname may have resulted from decreased access to under-the-counter anti-malarials and increased migration of gold miners to Suriname following a decline of the profitability of gold mining in a context of increased repression against illegal mining by the French army. Conclusion: This investigation of a suspicious malaria epidemic confirms the importance of malaria among illegal gold miners. Their mobility along the Guiana Shield and their health-seeking behaviour are likely to spread malaria in populations for which significant efforts are undertaken to fight against this disease. Fighting malaria in this population remains more relevant than ever. A pilot study (Malakit project) is currently in progress to evaluate the efficacy of kits for self-diagnosis and self-treatment.
NoteOpen access journal
VersionFinal published version
SponsorsRegional Health Agency of French Guiana
- Malakit: an innovative pilot project to self-diagnose and self-treat malaria among illegal gold miners in the Guiana Shield.
- Authors: Douine M, Sanna A, Galindo M, Musset L, Pommier de Santi V, Marchesini P, Magalhaes ED, Suarez-Mutis M, Hiwat H, Nacher M, Vreden S, Garancher L
- Issue date: 2018 Apr 10
- Illegal gold miners in French Guiana: a neglected population with poor health.
- Authors: Douine M, Mosnier E, Le Hingrat Q, Charpentier C, Corlin F, Hureau L, Adenis A, Lazrek Y, Niemetsky F, Aucouturier AL, Demar M, Musset L, Nacher M
- Issue date: 2017 Jul 17
- Prevalence of Plasmodium spp. in illegal gold miners in French Guiana in 2015: a hidden but critical malaria reservoir.
- Authors: Douine M, Musset L, Corlin F, Pelleau S, Pasquier J, Mutricy L, Adenis A, Djossou F, Brousse P, Perotti F, Hiwat H, Vreden S, Demar M, Nacher M
- Issue date: 2016 Jun 9
- Epidemiological and entomological studies of a malaria outbreak among French armed forces deployed at illegal gold mining sites reveal new aspects of the disease's transmission in French Guiana.
- Authors: Pommier de Santi V, Girod R, Mura M, Dia A, Briolant S, Djossou F, Dusfour I, Mendibil A, Simon F, Deparis X, Pagès F
- Issue date: 2016 Jan 22
- Malaria Hyperendemicity and Risk for Artemisinin Resistance among Illegal Gold Miners, French Guiana.
- Authors: Pommier de Santi V, Djossou F, Barthes N, Bogreau H, Hyvert G, Nguyen C, Pelleau S, Legrand E, Musset L, Nacher M, Briolant S
- Issue date: 2016 May