<p>Recently, the World Health Organization established the Diagnostic Technical Advisory Group to identify and prioritize diagnostic needs for neglected tropical diseases, and to ultimately describe the minimal and ideal characteristics for new diagnostic tests (the so-called target product profiles (TPPs)). We developed two generic frameworks: one to explore and determine the required sensitivity (probability to correctly detect diseased persons) and specificity (probability to correctly detect persons free of disease), and another one to determine the corresponding samples sizes and the decision rules based on a multi-category lot quality assurance sampling (MC-LQAS) approach that accounts for imperfect tests. We applied both frameworks for monitoring and evaluation of soil-transmitted helminthiasis control programs. Our study indicates that specificity rather than sensitivity will become more important when the program approaches the endgame of elimination and that the requirements for both parameters are inversely correlated, resulting in multiple combinations of sensitivity and specificity that allow for reliable decision making. The MC-LQAS framework highlighted that improving diagnostic performance results in a smaller sample size for the same level of program decision making. In other words, the additional costs per diagnostic tests with improved diagnostic performance may be compensated by lower operational costs in the field. Based on our results we proposed the required minimal and ideal diagnostic sensitivity and specificity for diagnostic tests applied in monitoring and evaluating of soil-transmitted helminthiasis control programs.</p>

doi.org/10.1371/journal.pntd.0009740, hdl.handle.net/1765/136748
PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

Bruno Levecke, L.E. (Luc) Coffeng, Christopher Hanna, Rachel L. Pullan, & Katherine M. Gass. (2021). Assessment of the required performance and the development of corresponding program decision rules for neglected tropical diseases diagnostic tests. PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases, 15(9). doi:10.1371/journal.pntd.0009740