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Spatial inequality, infectious diseases and disease control

Spatial inequality

(Picture by fxxu via pixabay.com, CC0 license)

Spatial inequality is the unequal distribution of resources and services across different areas or locations, such as healthcare, welfare, public services, household income and infrastructures. The distribution of such characteristics over space can be described in terms of proximity, distance, clustering and concentration. Spatial inequality can be visible in the urban/rural divide, between states or nations, or between more and less deprived areas within the same geographical unit.

Spatial inequalities are associated with health and social inequalities and affect population health. Understanding the extent and nature of differences between places, and their trends, can support the development of policies, strategies and interventions that have an impact on morbidity and mortality of different diseases.

As most of the world’s fastest growing cities are in Asia and Africa, the way infectious diseases coexist and interact with evolving rural and urban spaces, as well as with interfaces between human and wildlife, is increasingly complex.  

This collection focuses on emerging infectious diseases in humans and animals, including the impact of antimicrobial resistance, and brings together research that investigates the relationship between spatial inequalities of all kinds and the impact and prevalence of these infectious diseases. This collection will also welcome papers that seek solutions towards disease control across areas with particularly unequal distribution of resources and opportunities. 

The following journals are accepting submissions to the series:

AIDS Research and Therapy
Annals of Clinical Microbiology and Antimicrobials
Health Research Policy and Systems
Human Resources for Health
Globalization and Health
Gut Pathogens
Infectious Diseases of Poverty
International Journal for Equity in Health
International Journal of Health Geographics
Malaria Journal
One Health Outlook
Open Geospatial Data, Software and Standards
Parasites & Vectors

Manuscripts should be formatted according to the individual journals instructions for authors and submitted via the online submission system. Please indicate clearly in the title page that the manuscript is to be considered for the thematic series 'Spatial inequality, infectious diseases and disease control'. 

Manuscripts will be peer-reviewed independently by the respective journal. Accepted articles will be published online on a continuous basis.

Pre-submission enquiries are welcome. If you have questions before submitting your manuscript, please contact us.

Further references

The hidden burden of measles in Ethiopia: how distance to hospital shapes the disease mortality rate

Investigating spillover of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis from a prison: a spatial and molecular epidemiological analysis

Spatial epidemiology and infectious diseases - an article collection in BMC Medicine

Deprived Neighbourhoods and Spatial Inequalities in England

OECD - Spatial inequalities: across states or between rural and urban areas?

Spatial inequality and Development: An Overview of UNU-WIDER Project

Deadline for submissions: 31 December 2021.

Fees and funding

BMC and SpringerOpen Membership program

List of research funders and institutions worldwide that fund open access article-processing charges (APCs). 


  1. Colombia’s National Army is one of the largest military institutions in the country based on the number of serving members and its presence throughout the country. There have been reports of cases of acute or ...

    Authors: Omar Cantillo-Barraza, Jeffer Torres, Carolina Hernández, Yanira Romero, Sara Zuluaga, Camilo A. Correa-Cárdenas, Giovanny Herrera, Omaira Rodríguez, María Teresa Alvarado, Juan David Ramírez and Claudia Méndez

    Citation: Parasites & Vectors 2021 14:519

    Content type: Research

    Published on:

  2. Plasmodium vivax transmission-blocking vaccines (TBVs) are receiving increasing attention. Based on excellent transmission-blocking activities of the PbPH (PBANKA_0417200) and PbSOP26 (PBANKA_1457700) antigens in...

    Authors: Yongzhe Zhang, Fei Liu, Yan Zhao, Fan Yang, Jie Bai, Xitong Jia, Wanlapa Roobsoong, Jetsumon Sattabongkot, Liwang Cui, Yaming Cao, Enjie Luo and Meilian Wang

    Citation: Parasites & Vectors 2021 14:407

    Content type: Research

    Published on:

  3. Commensal flora colonization during hospitalization by bacteria is the first step for nosocomial infections while antibiotic resistance reduces therapeutic options. In aim to control this phenomenon, we initia...

    Authors: William Lelorel Nguekap Nankam, Pierre René Fotsing Kwetche, Gildas Boris Tazemda-Kuitsouc, Golda Joyce Djeutsa Chouna and Jean Michel Tekam

    Citation: Annals of Clinical Microbiology and Antimicrobials 2021 20:48

    Content type: Research

    Published on:

  4. Integrase inhibitors (INIs)-based antiretroviral therapies (ART) are more recommended than efavirenz (EFV)-based ART for people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA). Yet, the advantage of integrase inhibitors in treat...

    Authors: Yuanlu Shu, Ziwei Deng, Hongqiang Wang, Yi Chen, Lijialong Yuan, Ye Deng, Xiaojun Tu, Xiang Zhao, Zhihua Shi, Minjiang Huang and Chengfeng Qiu

    Citation: AIDS Research and Therapy 2021 18:25

    Content type: Review

    Published on:

  5. Cystic echinococcosis (CE) has a worldwide distribution and is especially prevalent in North African countries. With a mean annual surgical incidence (ASI) of CE of 12.7 per 100,000 inhabitants, Tunisia is one...

    Authors: Selim M’rad, Raja Chaâbane-Banaoues, Massaouda Ghrab, Hamouda Babba and Myriam Oudni-M’rad

    Citation: Parasites & Vectors 2021 14:216

    Content type: Research

    Published on:

  6. As malaria endemic countries strive towards elimination, intensified spatial heterogeneities of local transmission could undermine the effectiveness of traditional intervention policy.

    Authors: Raquel Lana, Narimane Nekkab, Andre M. Siqueira, Cassio Peterka, Paola Marchesini, Marcus Lacerda, Ivo Mueller, Michael White and Daniel Villela

    Citation: Malaria Journal 2021 20:87

    Content type: Research

    Published on:

  7. The rapid growth of Qatar in the last two decades has been associated with an enormous expansion of building programs in its cities and in the provision of new service industries. This in turn has attracted a ...

    Authors: Nadin Younes, Jerzy M. Behnke, Ahmed Ismail and Marawan A. Abu-Madi

    Citation: Parasites & Vectors 2021 14:63

    Content type: Research

    Published on:

  8. According to China’s Malaria Eradication Action Plan, malaria cases diagnosed and reported by health authorities at the county level must be further re-confirmed by provincial laboratories. The Yunnan Province...

    Authors: Ying Dong, Yan Deng, Yanchun Xu, Mengni Chen, Chun Wei, Canglin Zhang, Xianghua Mao and Jingbo Xue

    Citation: Malaria Journal 2020 19:409

    Content type: Research

    Published on:

  9. Malaria primarily affects populations living in poor socioeconomic conditions, with limited access to basic services, deteriorating environmental conditions, and barriers to accessing health services. Control ...

    Authors: Carol Yovanna Rosero, Gloria Isabel Jaramillo, Franco Andrés Montenegro, César García and Arelis Alexandra Coral

    Citation: Malaria Journal 2020 19:343

    Content type: Research

    Published on:

  10. Although preventable and curable, tuberculosis (TB) still occurs in poor or developing countries, mainly in metropolitan regions of larger cities. The disease is a serious public health problem, and is directl...

    Authors: Alexandre Tadashi Inomata Bruce, Thais Zamboni Berra, Felipe Lima dos Santos, Yan Mathias Alves, Ludmilla Leidianne Limirio Souza, Antônio Carlos Vieira Ramos, Luiz Henrique Arroyo, Juliane de Almeida Crispim, Ione Carvalho Pinto, Pedro Fredemir Palha, Aline Aparecida Monroe, Mellina Yamamura, Regina Célia Fiorati, Ana Carolina Scarpel Moncaio, Dulce Maria de Oliveira Gomes and Ricardo Alexandre Arcêncio

    Citation: Infectious Diseases of Poverty 2020 9:111

    Content type: Research Article

    Published on:

  11. Routine tuberculosis (TB) notifications are geographically heterogeneous, but their utility in predicting the location of undiagnosed TB cases is unclear. We aimed to identify small-scale geographic areas with...

    Authors: Katherine O. Robsky, Peter J. Kitonsa, James Mukiibi, Olga Nakasolya, David Isooba, Annet Nalutaaya, Phillip P. Salvatore, Emily A. Kendall, Achilles Katamba and David Dowdy

    Citation: Infectious Diseases of Poverty 2020 9:73

    Content type: Research Article

    Published on:

  12. Several studies highlighted the impact of community-based interventions whose purpose was to reduce the vectors’ breeding sites. These strategies are particularly interesting in low-and-middle-income countries...

    Authors: Emmanuel Bonnet, Florence Fournet, Tarik Benmarhnia, Samiratou Ouedraogo, Roch Dabiré and Valéry Ridde

    Citation: Infectious Diseases of Poverty 2020 9:61

    Content type: Case Study

    Published on:

  13. To further reduce malaria, larval source management (LSM) is proposed as a complementary strategy to the existing strategies. LSM has potential to control insecticide resistant, outdoor biting and outdoor rest...

    Authors: Steven Gowelo, Robert S. McCann, Constantianus J. M. Koenraadt, Willem Takken, Henk van den Berg and Lucinda Manda-Taylor

    Citation: Malaria Journal 2020 19:195

    Content type: Research

    Published on:

  14. Larval indices such as the house index (HI), Breteau index (BI) and container index (CI) are widely used to interpret arbovirus vector density in surveillance programmes. However, the use of such data as an al...

    Authors: Ana Carolina Policarpo Cavalcante, Ricardo Alves de Olinda, Alexandrino Gomes, John Traxler, Matt Smith and Silvana Santos

    Citation: Parasites & Vectors 2020 13:197

    Content type: Research

    Published on:

  15. Internal migration places individuals at high risk of contracting tuberculosis (TB). However, there is a scarcity of national-level spatial analyses regarding the association between TB and internal migration ...

    Authors: Wei-Bin Liao, Ke Ju, Ya-Min Gao and Jay Pan

    Citation: Infectious Diseases of Poverty 2020 9:5

    Content type: Research Article

    Published on:

  16. Repeated outbreaks of emerging pathogens underscore the need for preparedness plans to prevent, detect, and respond. As countries develop and improve National Action Plans for Health Security, addressing subna...

    Authors: E. N. Hulland, K. E. Wiens, S. Shirude, J. D. Morgan, A. Bertozzi-Villa, T. H. Farag, N. Fullman, M. U. G. Kraemer, M. K. Miller-Petrie, V. Gupta, R. C. Reiner Jr., P. Rabinowitz, J. N. Wasserheit, B. P. Bell, S. I. Hay, D. J. Weiss…

    Citation: BMC Medicine 2019 17:232

    Content type: Research article

    Published on:

  17. Trachoma is the leading infectious cause of blindness globally. The WHO has recommended the SAFE (Surgery, Antibiotics, Facial cleanliness and Environmental improvements) strategy to eliminate trachoma as a pu...

    Authors: Forest M. Altherr, Andrew W. Nute, Mulat Zerihun, Eshetu Sata, Aisha E. P. Stewart, Demelash Gessese, Berhanu Melak, Tigist Astale, Gedefaw Ayenew, E. Kelly Callahan, Melsew Chanyalew, Bizuayehu Gashaw, Lance A. Waller, Zerihun Tadesse and Scott D. Nash

    Citation: Parasites & Vectors 2019 12:540

    Content type: Research

    Published on:

  18. Infection with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) is an alarming problem in North African countries, but few studies have analyzed the geographical distribution of the epidemic. Libya, the second largest c...

    Authors: Mohamed A. Daw, Amina M. Daw, Nadia E. M. Sifennasr, Aisha M. Draha, Ahmed A. Daw, Ali A. Daw, Mohamed O. Ahmed, Ebtisam S. Mokhtar, Abdallah Hu. El-Bouzedi, Ibrahem M. Daw, Samia I. Adam and Saed Warrag

    Citation: AIDS Research and Therapy 2019 16:14

    Content type: Research

    Published on:

  19. The social determinants of health (SDHs) condition disease distribution and the ways they are handled. Socio-economic inequalities are closely linked to the occurrence of neglected tropical diseases, but empir...

    Authors: María del Pilar Fernández, María Sol Gaspe and Ricardo E. Gürtler

    Citation: Parasites & Vectors 2019 12:184

    Content type: Research

    Published on: