July 19, 2021

✪ Structural readiness to implement community-wide mass drug administration programs for soil-transmitted helminth elimination: results from a three-country hybrid study


Arianna Rubin Means, Elizabeth Orlan, Marie-Claire Gwayi-Chore, Angelin Titus, Saravanakumar Puthupalayam Kaliappan, Comlanvi Innocent Togbevi, Félicien Chabi, Katherine E. Halliday, Providence Nindi, Euripide Avokpaho, Khumbo Kalua, Moudachirou Ibikounlé, Sitara S. R. Ajjampur, Bryan J. Weiner, Judd L. Walson, & Kumudha Aruldas

University of Washington affiliated authors are displayed in bold.

✪ Open Access

Published: July 2021

Read the full text in the open access journal Implementation Science Communications



Current soil-transmitted helminth (STH) control programs target pre-school and school-age children with mass drug administration (MDA) of deworming medications, reducing morbidity without interrupting ongoing transmission. However, evidence suggests that STH elimination may be possible if MDA is delivered to all community members. Such a change to the STH standard-of-care would require substantial systems redesign. We measured baseline structural readiness to launch community-wide MDA for STH in Benin, India, and Malawi.


After field piloting and adaptation, the structural readiness survey included two constructs: Organizational Readiness for Implementing Change and Organizational Capacity for Change. Sub-constructs of organizational readiness include change commitment and change efficacy. Sub-constructs of organizational capacity include flexibility, organizational structure, and demonstrated capacity. Survey items were also separately organized into seven implementation domains. Surveys were administered to policymakers, mid-level managers, and implementers in each country using a five-point Likert scale. Item, sub-construct, construct, and domain-level medians and interquartile ranges were calculated for each stakeholder level within each country.


Median organizational readiness for change scores were highest in Malawi (5.0 for all stakeholder groups). In India, scores were 5.0, 4.0, and 5.0 while in Benin, scores were 4.0, 3.0, and 4.0 for policymakers, mid-level managers, and implementers, respectively. Median change commitment was equal to or higher than median change efficacy across all countries and stakeholder groups.

Median organizational capacity for change was highest in India, with a median of 4.5 for policymakers and mid-level managers and 5.0 for implementers. In Malawi, the median capacity was 4.0 for policymakers and implementers, and 3.5 for mid-level managers. In Benin, the median capacity was 4.0 for policymakers and 3.0 for mid-level managers and implementers. Median sub-construct scores varied by stakeholder and country.

Across countries, items reflective of the implementation domain ‘policy environment’ were highest while items reflective of the ‘human resource’ domain were consistently lower.


Across all countries, stakeholders valued community-wide MDA for STH but had less confidence in their collective ability to effectively implement it. Perceived capacity varied by stakeholder group, highlighting the importance of accounting for multi-level stakeholder perspectives when determining organizational preparedness to launch new public health initiatives.

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**This abstract is posted with permission under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License**