Ethical, Regulatory and Market related aspects of Deploying Triple Artemisinin-Based Combination Therapies for Malaria treatment in Africa: A study protocol.
Tindana P., de Haan F., Mokuolu OA., Guissou R., Bolarinwa OA., Ouedraogo JB., Tou F., Boon WPC., Moors EHM., Dondorp AM., Dhorda M., Amaratunga C., Cheah PY.
Introduction: According to the World Malaria Report 2019, Africa accounts for 94% of the global malaria deaths. While malaria prevalence and mortality have declined over the years, recent reports suggest that these gains may stand the risk of being reversed if resistance to Artemisinin Combination Therapies (ACTs) spreads from Southeast Asia to Africa. Efforts are being made to develop new treatments that will address the looming threat of ACT resistance, including the development of triple artemisinin combination therapies (TACTs). The proposed study seeks to explore the views of stakeholders on the key ethical, regulatory and market-related issues that should be considered in the potential introduction of triple artemisinin combination therapies (TACTs) in Africa. Methods: The study employed qualitative research methods involving in-depth interviews and focus group discussions (FGDs) with stakeholders, who will be directly affected by the potential deployment of triple artemisinin combination treatments, as regulators, suppliers and end-users. Participants will be purposively selected and will include national regulatory authorities, national malaria control programs, clinicians, distributors and retailers as well as community members in selected districts in Burkina Faso and Nigeria. Discussion: The proposed study is unique in being one of the first studies that seeks to understand the ethical, social, regulatory and market position issues prior to the development of a prospective antimalarial medicine.