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Dengue fever, tuberculosis, human immunodeficiency virus, and hepatitis C virus conversion in a group of long-term development aid workers.
J Travel Med. 2013 Nov-Dec; 20(6):361-7.JT

Abstract

BACKGROUND

Development and humanitarian aid workers are a diverse group of travelers who, because of the nature of their travel, may have specific travel-related health risks. The main objective of this study was to quantify the risk of dengue fever virus (DFV), tuberculosis (TB), human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), and hepatitis C virus (HCV) infections in a group of long-term development aid volunteers.

METHODS

Medical files of Volunteer Service Abroad (VSA) volunteers and their accompanying family/partner/spouse serving over 17 years (1995-2011) were reviewed. Demographics, destination, months spent in-country, and, where available, results of pre- and post-assignment testing for DFV, TB, HCV and HIV infections were extracted.

RESULTS

Results from 652 assignments were audited. Conversion rates were calculated when both pre- and post-assignment results were available. Evidence of dengue fever seroconversion was found in 6.3% of 205 volunteers [at a rate of 3.4 per 1,000 person months (pm) on assignment], with assignments in Southeast Asia having the highest risk. Evidence of TB during assignment was found in 2.9% of 336 volunteers converting at a rate of 1.4 per 1,000 pm. There were no HIV or HCV infections detected. On post-assignment questioning, 6.7% of volunteers reported unprotected sex with someone other than their regular partner and 9.8% reported a potential exposure to blood and/or blood products.

CONCLUSIONS

Infection with DFV and TB occurred in this group at rates similar to that seen in other groups of long-term travelers, and screening would appear to be warranted. While none contracted HIV or HCV infection, reported behavior did put them at risk of blood- and body fluid-borne diseases. It is important that pre-assignment travel health preparation in this group focuses on strategies to minimize these risks.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Department of Primary Health Care and General Practice, University of Otago, Wellington, New Zealand.No affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

Language

eng

PubMed ID

24118595

Citation

Visser, Jenny T., and Ciaran A. Edwards. "Dengue Fever, Tuberculosis, Human Immunodeficiency Virus, and Hepatitis C Virus Conversion in a Group of Long-term Development Aid Workers." Journal of Travel Medicine, vol. 20, no. 6, 2013, pp. 361-7.
Visser JT, Edwards CA. Dengue fever, tuberculosis, human immunodeficiency virus, and hepatitis C virus conversion in a group of long-term development aid workers. J Travel Med. 2013;20(6):361-7.
Visser, J. T., & Edwards, C. A. (2013). Dengue fever, tuberculosis, human immunodeficiency virus, and hepatitis C virus conversion in a group of long-term development aid workers. Journal of Travel Medicine, 20(6), 361-7. https://doi.org/10.1111/jtm.12072
Visser JT, Edwards CA. Dengue Fever, Tuberculosis, Human Immunodeficiency Virus, and Hepatitis C Virus Conversion in a Group of Long-term Development Aid Workers. J Travel Med. 2013;20(6):361-7. PubMed PMID: 24118595.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Dengue fever, tuberculosis, human immunodeficiency virus, and hepatitis C virus conversion in a group of long-term development aid workers. AU - Visser,Jenny T, AU - Edwards,Ciaran A, Y1 - 2013/10/09/ PY - 2013/04/20/received PY - 2013/08/19/revised PY - 2013/08/22/accepted PY - 2013/10/15/entrez PY - 2013/10/15/pubmed PY - 2014/7/16/medline SP - 361 EP - 7 JF - Journal of travel medicine JO - J Travel Med VL - 20 IS - 6 N2 - BACKGROUND: Development and humanitarian aid workers are a diverse group of travelers who, because of the nature of their travel, may have specific travel-related health risks. The main objective of this study was to quantify the risk of dengue fever virus (DFV), tuberculosis (TB), human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), and hepatitis C virus (HCV) infections in a group of long-term development aid volunteers. METHODS: Medical files of Volunteer Service Abroad (VSA) volunteers and their accompanying family/partner/spouse serving over 17 years (1995-2011) were reviewed. Demographics, destination, months spent in-country, and, where available, results of pre- and post-assignment testing for DFV, TB, HCV and HIV infections were extracted. RESULTS: Results from 652 assignments were audited. Conversion rates were calculated when both pre- and post-assignment results were available. Evidence of dengue fever seroconversion was found in 6.3% of 205 volunteers [at a rate of 3.4 per 1,000 person months (pm) on assignment], with assignments in Southeast Asia having the highest risk. Evidence of TB during assignment was found in 2.9% of 336 volunteers converting at a rate of 1.4 per 1,000 pm. There were no HIV or HCV infections detected. On post-assignment questioning, 6.7% of volunteers reported unprotected sex with someone other than their regular partner and 9.8% reported a potential exposure to blood and/or blood products. CONCLUSIONS: Infection with DFV and TB occurred in this group at rates similar to that seen in other groups of long-term travelers, and screening would appear to be warranted. While none contracted HIV or HCV infection, reported behavior did put them at risk of blood- and body fluid-borne diseases. It is important that pre-assignment travel health preparation in this group focuses on strategies to minimize these risks. SN - 1708-8305 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/24118595/full_citation L2 - https://academic.oup.com/jtm/article-lookup/doi/10.1111/jtm.12072 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -