Neglected tropical diseases

WHO data show unprecedented treatment coverage for bilharzia and intestinal worms

14 December 2018 | Geneva -- It is likely that countries endemic for schistosomiasis (bilharzia) and soil-transmitted helminthiases (intestinal worms) will be able to treat 75% of school-aged children by 2020 – the target set by the NTD Roadmap developed by the World Health Organization (WHO) in 2012. In 2017, almost 99 million people were treated.
This includes 81.1 million school-aged children, representing 68% coverage worldwide.
For intestinal worms, 598.1 million children were treated -188 million preschool-aged and 410.1 million school-aged children - representing 69% coverage worldwide.

©The END Fund

Eliminating rabies: potential investment in life-saving vaccines can bolster prospects for zero human rabies deaths

12 December 2018 | Geneva −− Addressing the high cost associated with human rabies vaccines and making them readily available to populations can save lives, notably children who are frequent victims of dog bites.

Providing equitable access to these vaccines can also have far-reaching implications in strengthening health systems, providing incentives to new actors to enter the market, and accelerating work towards reaching zero human rabies deaths by 2030.

©NAMPA

Governments and philanthropists announce new funding for neglected tropical diseases

4 December 2018 | Geneva −− The World Health Organization (WHO) has welcomed the announcement of new funding to sustain global efforts to eliminate neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) and avert the devastating impact they cause to mainly poor populations.
Out of a total of US$ 150 million from leading philanthropists and governments, US$ 105 million will be dedicated to eliminating trachoma as a public health problem in 10 African countries.
The announcement was made last Sunday during the “Global Citizen Festival: Mandela 100” concert in Johannesburg, South Africa.

Elimination mapping of endemic countries key to defeating river blindness

29 November 2018 | Geneva –– New data from an elimination mapping will be crucial to identifying all remaining areas where transmission of onchocerciasis (also called river blindness) occurs, as the world sustains progress towards defeating this parasitic disease.
Mapping will also help to prevent a recrudescence of blinding onchocerciasis and will be vital in determining when to stop treatment.
This is the first mapping towards elimination of transmission, as previous such strategies focused mainly on control.

©Sightsavers

Engaging field staff to achieve greater country impact against neglected tropical diseases

26 November 2018 | Brazzaville | Geneva -- They are the eyes, ears and voice of the organization, yet many of them have hardly had practical training during their time with the World Health Organization (WHO). National Professional Officers (or NPOs as they are often called) are locally recruited WHO staff but their responsibilities are immense.

Besides being good technicians, they need to have excellent communication and negotiation skills and should be proficient in administering budgets.

Preventing mother-to-child transmission of Chagas disease: from control to elimination

16 November 2018 | Geneva | Murcia (Spain) -- Recent evidence demonstrates that active screening of girls and women of childbearing age can effectively prevent congenital transmission of Chagas disease.

Consequently and in addition to existing strategies on early detection and treatment of infected newborns and siblings, WHO is focusing on prevention of transmission through diagnosis and treatment of women of childbearing age in endemic and non-endemic countries.