Snakebites Envenoming


Snakebites Envenoming Research And Policy

About Snakebites

Since being declared a Neglected Tropical Disease (NTD) by the World Health Organization in 2017, efforts have been made to address the following aspects related to snakebites:

  • Care and Commodities for Snakebite Treatment: There has been a focus on improving access to appropriate care and essential commodities for snakebite treatment. This includes ensuring the availability and affordability of antivenoms and other necessary medical supplies for snakebite management.
  • Community Knowledge and Education: Efforts have been made to improve community knowledge and education regarding snakebites. This involves raising awareness about prevention, first aid measures, and the importance of seeking prompt medical attention in case of a snakebite. Community education programs aim to empower individuals to take appropriate actions and reduce the risk of snakebite-related morbidity and mortality.
  • Policies Supporting Planning, Prioritization, and Budgeting: The recognition of snakebites as an NTD has prompted the development and implementation of policies that support planning, prioritization, and budgeting for snakebite management. These policies aim to ensure that snakebite prevention, treatment, and surveillance are integrated into national health systems and receive adequate resources and attention.
  • Reporting Tools for Snakebite Incidences: The establishment of reporting tools and systems for snakebite incidences is crucial for monitoring and evaluating the burden of snakebites. These tools help collect data on snakebite cases, including demographics, geographic distribution, and outcomes. This information is valuable for understanding the magnitude of the problem and guiding targeted interventions.

In partnership with Health Action International, the following activities are supported:

  1. Research and evidence generation: Research is conducted at both facility and community levels to gather information on snakebite treatment, care, access to commodities, and knowledge levels. The findings of this research are shared during Community Health Management Team (CHMT) meetings to scale up advocacy efforts.
  2. Advocacy for provision of care and treatment: Advocacy efforts focus on ensuring that care and treatment for snakebites are available in lower-level health facilities, where most snakebite incidents occur. The aim is to improve access to timely and appropriate care for snakebite victims.
  3. Joint community sensitization programs: Community sensitization programs are organized to raise awareness about snakebite prevention measures, provide first aid information, and educate communities on the importance of seeking treatment at a health facility. These programs aim to empower communities to take preventive measures and seek prompt medical attention when needed.
  4. Workshops and capacity strengthening: Workshops are facilitated to enhance the knowledge and skills of health workers in managing snakebite cases. Support is also provided in county discussions to prioritize snakebite treatment and strengthen local capacity to address this public health issue effectively.
  5. Dissemination of national clinical guidelines: The Ministry of Health national clinical guidelines, which provide practical tools for snakebite awareness, prevention, treatment, and management, are disseminated to healthcare workers, community members, and civil society organizations in the focus counties. This ensures that stakeholders have access to standardized guidelines for addressing snakebite cases.
  6. Advocacy for mainstreaming snakebite treatment and care: Sustained advocacy interventions are carried out to prioritize snakebite treatment and care in high burden counties within the Universal Health Coverage package. The aim is to ensure that snakebite management is integrated into the broader healthcare system and receives appropriate resources and attention.

Through these activities, the partnership between the organization and Health Action International aims to generate evidence, advocate for improved care and treatment, raise community awareness, strengthen healthcare capacity, disseminate guidelines, and prioritize snakebite management within the healthcare system.