SHISTA

Zipime Weka Schista! (Do self-testing sister)

Is a one- stop home self-sampling for female genital schistosomiasis, HPV, Trichomonas and HIV as a cost-effective and self-empowering strategy to increase case detection and improve access to care for women of reproductive age in 3 communities in Zambia.

About

The Zipime Weka Schista (Schista! for short) study aims to integrate female genital schistosomiasis, a neglected tropical gynecological disease, within the wider sexual and reproductive health screening strategies.

Research

Integration of home self-sampling for the screening of female genital schistosomiasis with human papillomavirus (HPV) and self-testing for HIV and sexually transmitted infections is a cost-effective and self-empowering strategy that will increase the detection of cases and improve access to care for girls and women of reproductive age in sub-Saharan Africa.

This study is designed as a holistic approach to FGS detection at-scale in the community and within the wider scope of female sexual and reproductive health surveillance and linkage to care in Zambia. Female genital schistosomiasis (FGS) causes substantial morbidity in the female genital tract. Home-based genital self-sampling procedures allow discrete and convenient testing for participants with difficulty accessing a medical facility. Extending the possibility of home-based sampling for S. haematobium would allow improved diagnosis and treatment of this important condition.

This study’s emphasis on home-based testing compared with clinic-based testing will evaluate an innovative approach for future expansion of surveillance of FGS using diagnostics with high feasibility for use at scale with a special emphasis on health economics to aim for sustainability.

The Zipime Weka Schista! (Schista! for short) study brings together world-wide experts from the fields of female genital schistosomiasis, cervical cancer and HIV to propose an innovative approach to integrate multi-pathogen home-based self-sampling and testing  representing the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, Zambart and is funded by UKRI under the Future Leaders Fellowships