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Improvements in Compliance with Medical Force Protection Measures by Simplification of the Anti-Malarial Chemoprophylaxis Regime
  1. Capt Emma Sellers, FASC, AMD HQ Support Unit1,
  2. DA Ross, Assistant Director Army Health Policy2 and
  3. AD Green, Defence Consultant Adviser in Communicable Diseases3
  1. 1Slim Rd, Camberley, GU15 4NA
  2. 2Army Medical Directorate, FASC, Camberley
  3. 3Ministry of Defence

Abstract

Objectives Medical Force Protection (MFP) is important in keeping service personnel “fit to fight.” It is particularly important for overseas deployment, where personnel are exposed to a range of infectious diseases. We report a full audit cycle assessing compliance with medical force protection measures, on an exercise in Belize.

Methods An anonymous questionnaire was administered to personnel four weeks after returning from an Infantry Overseas Training Exercise (OTX) in Belize in two successive years (OTX 1& 2).

Results Compliance with physical MFP measures (mosquito nets, insecticide soak of kit and personal insect repellent usage) was excellent on both exercises. Antimalarial chemoprophylaxis compliance with a regime of weekly chloroquine and daily proguanil was poor (30%) during OTX 1. Revision of the regime to weekly chloroquine alone following review of anti-malarial policies increased compliance on OTX 2 to 67%.

Conclusion Simplification of dosage regimes, consistency of information provided between different medical briefs and emphasis of the threat from malaria in Belize significantly improved compliance with antimalarial chemoprophylaxis.

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