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Neglected diseases journal seeks African Covid-19 papers

PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases extends scope to include new illness

An international open-access journal on neglected diseases has called on African researchers to submit papers on Covid-19. 

PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases will be broadening its scope to include Covid-19, an editorial featuring the journal’s editors said.

“We will consider articles from the community of scientists and public health experts in Asia, Africa, and Latin America now shifting their efforts to combat the Covid -19 pandemic,” the authors wrote on 10 April. “We therefore welcome original high quality research papers and front matter articles, including viewpoints and editorials.”

The researchers based in the United States and India say Covid-19 could “become a global health terror” on a par with major NTDs.

They warn that while the caseload is still relatively small in low- and middle-income countries—including the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Nigeria and South Africa—the situation will almost certainly deteriorate in the coming months.

“We believe there is a high probability the current numbers represent underestimates due to inadequate testing. Surely, lack of access to diagnostic kits comprises one of the many components of weak health systems in resource-poor nations,” they say.

The authors say the seasonal nature of other viral respiratory pathogens may mean the worst is yet to come for the Southern Hemisphere.