Recent emphasis on malaria elimination and eradication (E&E) goals is changing the way that experts evaluate malaria diagnostic tools and tactics. As prevalence declines, the focus of malaria management is pivoting toward low-density, subclinical infections and geographically and demographically concentrated reservoirs. These and other changes present challenges and opportunities for innovations in malaria diagnostics aimed at meeting the needs of malaria elimination programs. Developing such technologies requires a review of the operational approaches to detecting malaria infections in areas of declining prevalence. Here we review recent research on epidemiology and biology related to malaria elimination and operational factors that influence E&E strategies. We further propose use-scenarios and a target product profile framework to define and prioritize the required attributes of infection-detection technologies.
Keywords: active surveillance; asymptomatic; elimination; low density; malaria.
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