Archive for February, 2011

Spotlight: NTD Elimination Prospects Good in the Americas

February 28th, 2011

A new study by the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) demonstrates that NTDs can be reduced and eliminated with increased drug administration, vaccination, and water and sanitation improvements.  The paper, published in PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases, suggests that:

the goal of elimination as a public health problem or drastic reduction of the selected neglected diseases is achievable in the Region. The focality of most of the neglected diseases and the countries’ efforts, supported by international organizations and donors, present a positive scenario for combating neglected diseases in the Americas.

Source: PAHO based on several sources; image of soil-transmitted parasites map.

For the first time, specific areas where NTDs have been found are being mapped out. PAHO endeavors to target six specific diseases for elimination which include: lymphatic filariasis, onchocerciasis, schistosomiasis, human rabies transmitted by dogs, trachoma, and soil-transmitted parasites. Health Ministries from the Americas are entreating PAHO to spearhead resource mobilization and technical support towards the reduction and elimination of NTDs.

Learn more!

Southern Philippines Irrigation Sector

February 28th, 2011

click photo to return to image source

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has proposed a new project to alleviate poverty and improve irrigation and farmer productivity in four regions of Southern Philippines.

The objective of the Project is to increase incomes of about 10,000 farm households through increased agricultural production and crop diversification, resulting from investment in irrigation infrastructure and measures to promote user participation in project development or improvement and subsequent system management.

The project endeavors to improve agricultural production, diversification of crops, and the standard of living in Southern Philippines agrarian communities. The advancement of rural irrigation systems will promote high crop yields, healthier soil, and a stable economy.

The project also provides for improved management of degraded watersheds, resettlement of populations displaced by reservoir impoundment, measures to control schistosomiasis and development of indigenous people.

Scistomiasis is one of the most common and deadly Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTD).  It is transmitted by contact with contaminated fresh water.  Irrigation is the artificial application of water into soil to promote crop growth.  Contaminated water used to grow crops will contaminate the food supply and amplify the risk of contracting scistomiasis in a community.

Learn more here!

Weekly Round-Up 2/22-2/25

February 28th, 2011

Hey Folks!

Check out our weekly round up post in case you missed it!

February 25th:

Deworming Day in Cambodia aims to educate, treat & prevent

Chiapas Receives 5.5 Million Pesos for the Elimination of Neglected Tropical Diseases

February 24th:

Launch of The 2010 Deworming Inventory

Netherlands Joins the Fight Against NTDs

February 23rd:

An Eye on the World: The New Global Atlas for Trachoma

February 22nd:

Reading List 2/22/2011

Which NTD Should I Fake to Get Out of Work?

Time to Read! Reading List 2/28/2011

February 28th, 2011

Turn off that television and read a little today. Below are some great articles to get your NTD education week started right.

To start off, travel over to Sierra Leone to read about the Village Medical Project for Sierra Leone.  A plan to improve health conditions in small communities. Then pop over to a science lab to learn about the power of DNA coding in fighting deadly, yet preventable diseases. Finally, dont hesitate to read diary entries related to World Health Organizations (WHO) list of Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs); todays entry focuses on the sleeping sickness.

  1. Rural Medical Project in Sierra Leone
  2. DNA coding to track mosquitoes
  3. Diary entry on Human African Trypanosomiasis (HAT) or sleeping sickness.


Deworming Day in Cambodia aims to educate, treat prevent

February 25th, 2011

Reposted with permission from the ONE Campaigns blog

Kim Koporc from Children Without Worms (CWW) writes about an illness that affects children all over the world, including Africa: intestinal worms.

Photo Credit: Children without Worms

When I visited Cambodia with Johnson Johnson for a deworming day at Poek Ho (waterfall) school in Kandal Province, I was struck by the sheer number of students who lined up to receive mebendazole. These children showed up to receive treatment for intestinal parasites with mebendazole donated by Johnson Johnson. They also received a meal, which for some was likely the only meal they received that day.

Photo Credit: Children without Worms

These children were at particular risk of infection with intestinal worms because worms thrive in the warm climate. The lack of access to sanitation facilities in Cambodia doesn’t help much, either. In America, it is hard for us to imagine that more than 1.2 billion people living in developing countries are infected with intestinal worms. Worms are most prevalent in children between the ages of 6 to 14 and can lead to malnutrition, robbing them of the energy they need to learn and grow.

Schools provide CWW and our partners with a means to distribute the mebendazole to the children who need it, and schools also provide a platform to teach STH prevention by promoting healthy behavior within the classroom. Helen Keller International, our partners in Cambodia, works to integrate deworming prevention and hygiene into school programs and curriculum.

Photo Credit: Children without Worms

Even though schools provide a platform for reaching children in Cambodia, many of the poorest children do not have the resources and ability to attend school, and therefore, are left out of these deworming days. Strategies need to be developed to target this vulnerable population, such as inviting non-enrolled children to attend on “deworming day” and working with community leaders to identify and treat these children.

Treatment, hygiene education and access to sanitation and clean water are all components needed to bring STH infection under control, and together, governments, NGOs and other groups can come up with better solutions to reach this vulnerable population and find ways to prevent and treat intestinal worms.

There are many health challenges that children face throughout the world. But for intestinal worms, there is a solution that greatly improves a child’s capacity to learn and grow. A dose of medication, along with hygiene education and access to sanitation, are vital steps forward in improving a child’s life.

Read more about CWW’s work to distribute mebendazole from Johnson Johnson to school age children as part of the Cambodia’s national deworming program.

Chiapas Receives 5.5 Million Pesos for the Elimination of Neglected Tropical Diseases

February 25th, 2011

Press Release from Inter-American Development Bank:

More than 132,000 people will benefit from a program Inter-American Development Bank(IDB), Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) and the Sabin Vaccine Institute (SVI) signed with the State of Chiapas to combat some of the worst infectious diseases.

The Chiapas State Government will fight tropical diseases such as trachoma and helminthiasis with $312,000 donated by the institutions and their local counterpart. FEMSA Foundation has also joined this effort and donated $137,520 to the State of Chiapas.

The program endeavors to reduce morbidity and help raise the index of human development in the Southern-most state of Mexico. It plans to ensure compliance with international commitments such as the elimination of onchocerciasis, trachoma, rabies transmitted by dogs, control of diseases like Chagas disease and leishmaniasis, as well as prevention from soil-transmitted helminthiasis. These diseases have detrimental social impacts that include low work productivity and social occlusion.

The agreement on the donation was signed on February 15, 2011. The first project under the initiative to combat tropical diseases will be held in the five trachoma-endemic municipalities of Chiapas: San Juan Cancuc, Oxchuc, Tenejapa, Huixtan and Chanal. This pilot project aims to show how comprehensive and well designed projects can achieve elimination and control of these diseases.

The agreement was signed by the state authorities of Chiapas, State Governor Lic. Juan Sabines Guerrero, the Health Secretary, Dr. James Gomez Montes, the IDB representative in Mexico, Mr. Ellis Juan, the Managing Director of the Global Network for Neglected Tropical Diseases, Dr. Neeraj Mistry, the Director of FEMSA Foundation, Mr. Vidal Garza, and Dr. Humberto Montiel, representing the Pan American Health Organization. Being witnessed by Dr. Margarita Aguilar, PAHO representative in Chiapas.

This first demonstration project will also receive additional resources from the state government to provide clean water and basic sanitation to municipalities. The programs objective is to demonstrate reproducibility in any Latin American country, which will positively impact human and social development in the region.

To learn more click here!

Launch of The 2010 Deworming Inventory

February 24th, 2011

The Global NGO Deworming Inventory invites you to participate and support The 2010 Deworming Inventorys mission to highlight the achievements of NGO deworming efforts at the global level.

The Deworming Inventory, launched in June 2010, is a project of the World Health Organization (WHO) in partnership with Children Without Worms (CWW), the Schistosomiasis Control Initiative (SCI), and Deworm the World (DtW). T heir mission is to assess the breadth and scope of NGO deworming activities and treatment achievements worldwide.  The Inventory aggregates data regarding NGO deworming activities and presents a centralized overview of deworming progress. The inventory is shared with the WHO Preventive Chemotherapy (PCT) Databank in order to compare NGO data with initiatives from Ministries of Health and measure the collective progress towards the World Health Assembly (WHA) target of treating 75% of school age children at risk of infection with intestinal worms.

The results from the 2009 Inventory showed that twenty-four NGOs participated in the 2009 Deworming Inventory. 62.8 million treatments (school-age children treated with a deworming drug) were reported and ff those treatments, 20.8 million were unique treatments not previously captured in the WHO databank; demonstrating that deworming efforts conducted by NGOs are not widely recognized at the global level and therefore not reflected in measurements of global progress towards reaching the WHA target.

Check out their 2009 Inventory and learn more about this project here!

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    • The Global Network for Neglected Tropical Diseases is a major advocacy and resource mobilization initiative of the Sabin Vaccine Institute dedicated to raising the awareness, political will, and funding necessary to control and eliminate the most common neglected tropical diseases (NTDs)--a group of disabling, disfiguring, and deadly diseases affecting more than 1.4 billion people worldwide living on less than $1.25 a day.
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