The aim of this evidence implementation project is to promote evidence-based practice in artemisinin-based combination therapy for managing uncomplicated malaria in children under five, thereby improving patient outcomes and resource utilization in the Bali Health District, Cameroon.
The burden of disease attributable to malaria has significantly improved in the last three years, however morbidity and mortality risks are still present, especially for children under five. In children with uncomplicated P. falciparum malaria, there is strong evidence to suggest that artemisinin-based combination therapy (ACT) is effective in treating malaria. The World Health Organization has strong recommendations with high-quality evidence guiding practice in the “test, treat and track” approach using microscopy, rapid diagnostics tests and ACTs.
This evidence implementation project used the Joanna Briggs Institute Practical Application of Clinical Evidence System (JBI PACES) and Getting Research into Practice (GRiP) audit and feedback tool for promoting evidence-based healthcare involving three phases of activity.
We compared compliance with best practice recommendations at baseline against a follow-up compliance at four months, following implementation of strategies identified. Compliance rates improved overall by 31% (R: 20–42) for all criteria and sites, with differences noticed between sites. Nineteen barriers were identified, stratified into clinician, community health worker, patient and policy maker related barriers.
Despite existing barriers to evidence implementation, getting research into practice is possible and does improve quality of care.