Implementation science research for the scale-up of evidence-based interventions for sickle cell disease in africa: a commentary

Background The burden of sickle cell disease (SCD) is greatest among African nations. Effective scalability of evidence-based interventions (e.g., newborn screening, health education, prophylaxis for infection, optimal nutrition and hydration, hydroxyurea therapy, blood transfusions, and transcranial Doppler (TCD) screening) is urgently needed particularly in these settings for disease management. However, Africa is constrained by limited resources and the lack of capacity to conduct implementation science research for proper understanding of context, and assessment of barriers and facilitators to the uptake and scalability of evidence-based interventions (EBI) for SCD management. Main Body We outline implementation science approaches to embed EBI for SCD within the African context and highlight key implementation research programs for SCD management. Building implementation research capacity will meet the major need of developing effective life-long and accessible locally-tailored interventions for patients with SCD in Africa. Conclusion This commentary communicates the importance of the application of implementation science methodology to scale-up evidence-based interventions for the management of SCD in order to reduce pain, prevent other morbidities and premature death experienced by people with SCD in Africa, and improve their overall quality of life.