Perceptions and practices of community members relating to trachoma in Africa: a qualitative systematic review protocol
OBJECTIVE: The objective of this systematic review is to synthesize and present the best available evidence on community perceptions and practices relating to trachoma in Africa. INTRODUCTION: Globally, trachoma is the leading cause of blindness and is responsible for about 1.4% of all cases of blindness. The African continent is the worst affected, with about 1.9 million cases of trichiasis (61%). While interventions are currently being implemented to combat the disease in Africa, very little is known by decision makers about community perceptions and practices relating to trachoma, which may hinder successful implementation. INCLUSION CRITERIA: Studies with participants, regardless of their health status, gender, religion and ethnicity, aged 14 and over conducted in any African country, will be considered. Studies on Africans, conducted out of the continent and those involving healthcare professionals, will not be included in this review. METHODS: Qualitative studies, published in English from 1996 onwards. will be considered. Databases to be searched will include, but not be limited to: PubMed, CINAHL, Embase and PsycINFO. Study selection, critical appraisal and data extraction will be conducted by two independent reviewers, using the appropriate JBI methodology and any disagreement will be resolved by discussion or with a third reviewer. Qualitative findings will be synthesized using the appropriate JBI methodology, following the meta-aggregation approach. Where textual pooling is not possible, the findings will be presented in narrative form. The ConQual approach will be used to grade synthesized findings, and these will be presented in a Summary of Findings.