Robin Meldrum
Movement is by pirogue (dugout canoe) for the MSF sleeping sickness mobile team in northern Bandundu Province, DRC. Transporting a mobile laboratory, with microscopes, rotators, centrifuges and other diagnostic equipment, is a challenge where roads do not exist and all the team's movements are by pirogue or on foot. Ice-packs need to be transported to the team's location every five days to keep the cold chain for the reagents functional. MSF is conducting large-scale screening for sleeping sickness to determine the prevalence in several particularly remote areas of DRC. These are areas where where sleeping sickness has been known in the past, but where inaccessibility means the national sleeping sickness programme has not been able to conduct active screening for years, sometimes more than a decade.