Samantha Bobba1,2, Hamish McManus1, John Kaldor1
Purpose: To evaluate risk factors for trachoma and trends in trachoma prevalence in the Asia-Paciﬁc region utilising Global Trachoma Mapping Project data (GTMP).
Methods: Population-based prevalence surveys were conducted in Vanuatu, Fiji and the Solomon Islands (SI) according to the GTMP protocol. GTMP databases accessible to the Kirby Institute were used to determine the prevalence of active trachoma in children aged 1-9 years and individuals aged ≥
15 years. Multivariate analysis was conducted to determine correlation with factors such as age, sani- tation and access to water supply.
Results: A total of 16,277 individuals were examined: 2,306 from Ba Fiji, 2,709 from Choiseul SI, 4,052 from Temotu SI, 3,129 from Western Province SI, and 4081 from Penama Vanuatu. Age-adjusted prevalence of active trachoma ranged from 25.7% (95% conﬁdence interval (CI):20.0-31.5) in Temotu, to 3.6% (95% CI:1.3-5.8) in Ba. In multivariate models, higher risk of active trachoma was detected in 5-9 year olds com- pared with 1-4 year olds for SI (Adjusted odds ratio (AOR):3.77, P < 0.001) and Vanuatu (AOR:1.79, P = 0.007), and in households having >3 children aged 1-9years for SI (AOR:1.70, P = 0.035). Lower risk was detected in females for SI (AOR: 0.71, P = 0.01). Of sanitation variables, unimproved household latrines were associated with increased risk of active trachoma in Vanuatu (AOR:2.38, P = 0.002).
Conclusion: This study provides the ﬁrst direct comparative analysis of trachoma prevalence across different Paciﬁc nations, potentially facilitating the development of a targeted strategy to reduce active trachoma speciﬁcally in the Paciﬁc region.