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Abstract, POS Neglected Tropical Diseases, 2021

Schistosomiasis is an infectious parasitic disease and one of the 20 diseases considered by the World Health Organization as a neglected tropical disease. It is typically associated with poor environmental and sanitary conditions, primarily affecting rural communities. However, with the currently observed rapid urbanization and predicted two-thirds of the world population living in urban areas by 2050, concerns are raised about a spread of schistosomiasis to urban and peri-urban areas. At the same time, there seems to be little knowledge of the extent of schistososomiasis in urban areas. In light of the efforts to control morbidity and ultimately achieve elimination of schistosomiasis as well as reaching Sustainable Development Goals 3 “achieve health for all” and 11 “make human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient, and sustainable,” this systematic literature review was conducted to address the existing research and mapping gaps and to contribute to the understanding of the burden of schistosomiasis in areas that have not, as yet, been the focus of control efforts and mass drug administration programs. The review suggests that rapid and unorganized urbanization and resulting poor living conditions in urban and peri-urban areas may lead to new disease foci and thereby increase the overall disease burden.