Tag Archives: Honduras

How END7 Support Helps Countries across the World

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Indonesia too!

END7 donations go a long way, especially since 100 percent of donations made go directly to NTD treatment programs in Asia, Africa and Latin America and the Caribbean, the regions with the largest NTD burdens.

This money helps train the community health workers that deliver the NTD medicine to communities, fund educational materials that teach kids how to prevent NTDs, support the delivery of NTD medicine to remote areas, provide clean water to communities and strengthen these country’s abilities to help their own people who suffer daily from NTDs.

These parasitic and bacterial diseases infect 1.4 billion people worldwide, causing unnecessary suffering and trapping families in poverty.

Dedicated partners, including ministries of health and education, governments, regional institutions like the END7 campaign – work hard to support countries around the world that are plagued by NTDs. seventy-four countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America have already developed plans to control and eliminate NTDs. But often these countries lack the money or resources necessary to carry out their plans year after year.

Together, we’re making real progress. Because of the dedicated support of people like you, girls like Pwint Yamone-Thin are healthy, active and free of NTDs; Kids like Neema and Fatuma Kahindi have a brighter future.

See the projects END7 donations supported and the impact they’re are making on the lives of those who needlessly suffer from NTDs.

While we’ve done so much together, we must continue to support those suffering from NTDs. By donating to END7 today, you’ll ensure that more children around the world live happy and healthy lives. Your support means that governments around the world can continue to provide NTD treatment to their most vulnerable populations – and end NTDs once and for all. Donate now.

Why More than a Million School Kids in Honduras are Happy without Worms

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When I arrived at Escuela Pedro Nufio, a school in Choluteca, Honduras, I saw hundreds of healthy kids eagerly raising their hands in class, laughing with their teachers and playing outside with their friends.

These kids were happy and healthy thanks to Honduras’ commitment to end neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) – an effort supported by Honduras’ Ministries of Health and Education, the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), the World Food Program, several NGOs, and last but not least, hundreds of END7 supporters who made generous donations on behalf of the 2.5 million children suffering from NTDs in Honduras.

See the difference we made together:

In 2012, Honduras became the first country in Latin America to launch a national plan to control and eliminate NTDs. Since then, the country has scaled up its national deworming campaign, and this past year, 1,051,659 children in 11,576 schools were treated for NTDs.

But Honduras’ deworming campaign is about more than just NTD treatment. Access to clean water and sanitation, and NTD education and prevention are also important parts of the country’s integrated program. To answer this need, END7 supporters provided clean water to 100,461 people by purchasing and installing water treatment equipment in the municipalities of Marcovia and El Triunfo. END7 donors also funded the training of school children, teachers, and communities on parasitic worms and the importance of hand washing.

After traveling to Honduras, I felt more optimistic than ever that we CAN control and eliminate NTDs. Honduras is making incredible strides against these diseases – and the health workers and teachers I met there are extremely passionate and committed to ending the suffering of their people.

To reach their end goal, Honduras is moving forward with eight department level operational plans and the training of personnel from each department on NTD control-related activities. However, Honduras still needs support to close their funding gap and reach all children at risk for NTDs.

The kids I met in Choluteca need to be treated annually to remain free of NTDs. Donate today to make sure these kids continue to smile, succeed in school and lie healthy lives.

Honduras: Leading the Way in the Americas through Integrated Efforts to Treat Neglected Tropical Diseases

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Honduras is one of Latin America’s leaders in health and integration; their nation-wide effort to control and eliminate neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) draws upon the institutionalized infrastructure of the country’s national vaccination week activities, and works across multiple sectors to deworm as many children as possible throughout the country.

Honduras’ unique and successfully-integrated approach to fighting NTDs is highlighted in a recently published success story, click here to read in Spanish).The success story highlights one of the country’s pilot programs which dewormed children aged one four as part of the country’s vaccination week activities and scaled up to reach all preschool children at-risk, as well as Honduras’ efforts to deworm all school-aged children across the country.

In Honduras, 870,816 preschool children and 2 million school-age children are at risk for soil transmitted helminth infections (also known as intestinal worms). Intestinal worm infections are wide-spread and have a 50 percent prevalence rate in nearly half the country’s municipalities. These infections can cause severe anemia and contribute to pregnancy complications in women and severe malnutrition in children. NTDs also pose a threat to the development for endemic countries like Honduras by trapping the most vulnerable populations in cycles of poverty.

To address the heavy NTD burden within the country, Honduras’ NTD program leverages two platforms: Vaccination Week in the Americas and the Escuelas Saludables program. During Vaccination Week in the Americas, the deworming of children aged one-four occurs alongside a variety of other health interventions like vitamin A supplementation and vaccinations. And concurrently, Honduras’ Ministry of Health works with the Ministry of Education and Social Development, the World Food Programme and others to deworm school children across the country. Just last year, the Global Network partnered with these groups, the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), Operation Blessing and the MAMA Project to deworm more than one million school children.

And beyond just deworming, Honduras is integrating water, hygiene and sanitation (WASH) practices into its NTD prevention efforts. Because NTDs are easily spread by contaminated water sources and a lack of hygiene and sanitation practices, health workers and teachers promote hygiene education among children through the Escuelas Saludables program. Additionally, four safe water systems (hydrochlorinators) were installed in the municipalities of Marcovia and El Triunfo.

Honduras’ deworming program has been successful not only because of its integrated nature, but also because of its political and public support. For example, in 2010 Honduras formed a National NTD Committee, called the Mesa Tecnica, which includes NTD experts from the Ministry of Health, PAHO country office and various other partners including academia and nongovernmental organizations. The Mesa Tecnica has led efforts to map the prevalence of intestinal worms and develop the national NTD plan.

Honduras also has the support of Global Network NTD Special Envoys including Dr. Mirta Roses Periago, former PAHO Director, His Excellency, President Ricardo Lagos Escobar of Chile and His Excellency, President Alvaro Arzú Iriogoyen of Guatemala.

This combination of political and public support, and a well-designed and integrated NTD program have solidified Honduras’ position as a leader in NTD control and elimination efforts in the region. To learn more about Honduras’ efforts and to read the full success story, click here.

A Comprehensive Analysis of Soil-Transmitted Helminths in Honduras

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Honduras became the first country in Latin America and the Caribbean to launch its national and integrated plan addressing neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) in April 2012; however, information gaps regarding the prevalence and intensity of soil-transmitted helminth (STH or intestinal worm) infections remained. The first comprehensive historic review of soil-STH prevalence and research studies done in Honduras was recently published – the information analyzed and presented in the new article will be instrumental in the successful implementation of the country’s national plan on NTDs.

The article, titled “A Scoping Review and Prevalence Analysis of Soil-Transmitted Helminth Infections in Honduras,” was published in PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases. Sabin Vaccine Institute’s Dr. Maria Elena Bottazzi, herself a Honduran and Deputy Director of Sabin’s Product Development Partnership, is one of the authors.

As part of their efforts, the researchers conducted a review of hundreds of studies dating back to May 1930, some of which had not been published. Using studies published between 2001 and 2012 that included epidemiological data from Honduras’ 18 departments, the researchers were able to produce STH prevalence maps. The researchers included the most recent information available after consulting with various groups involved in STH control activities, including the Ministry of Health, the Healthy Schools Program, the Parasitology Department of the School of Microbiology (part of the National Autonomous University of Honduras, UNAH), the World Food Program and the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO).

The results from their review are astounding – the researchers found that the prevalence of STH in 40.6 percent of the municipalities in Honduras is greater than 50 percentonce a year in communities with STH prevalence over 20 percent, and twice a year in communities with STH prevalence over 50 percent. This strategy not only reduces the morbidity and the intensity of infection on those already infected with this NTD, but it also helps protect the entire community from further infection.

The researchers also found that the STH prevalence was higher in municipalities with a lower socioeconomic status – those characterized by having a lower human development index and less access to safe drinking water or improved sanitation.

The Sabin Vaccine Institute’s Global Network for Neglected Tropical Diseases recently traveled to Honduras and witnessed the effects of intestinal worms on some of Honduras’ poorest communities, including those in the department of Choluteca. After speaking with a head teacher at Escuela Urbana Mixta Pedro Nufio (1st to 6th grade), we learned that 880 students attending the school were at risk for intestinal worms.

View photos from the trip below:

Children in Choluteca and across Honduras are being treated annually for intestinal worms thanks to Honduras’ national plan of action against NTDs. However, many children are still heavily infected. For example, some students in Choluteca expelled worms through their mouth and nose after receiving treatment – a sign of heavy infection.

However, progress is being made and the deworming of preschool children has been institutionalized as part of national vaccination week activities in the country.  Honduras is continuing to lead in one of the fundamental components in the fight against NTDs: integration with infrastructure improvements in water and sanitation, supported by community education campaigns. This type of cross-sectoral integration will bring us closer to achieving the NTD 2020 control and elimination goals set by the WHO Roadmap.

We look forward to sharing stories of how the government of Honduras and its partners use the findings from this study to successfully implement their national plan on NTDs! We invite you to follow Dr. Bottazzi (@PLOSNTDs) on Twitter, to keep up with new developments in the NTD field.