Critical to Helen Keller Intl’s efforts to prevent blindness and malnutrition is our work in the control, elimination and morbidity management of neglected tropical diseases (NTDs). Our integrated NTD control program uses mass drug administration (MDA) to address onchocerciasis and trachoma (conditions that lead to blindness), schistosomiasis and soil-transmitted helminths (conditions that lead to malnutrition), and lymphatic filariasis (a condition that leads to morbidity and disability).
Morbidity Management and Disability Prevention. From 2015-2019 Helen Keller Intl’s Morbidity Management and Disability Prevention (MMDP) Project, funded by the United States Agency for International Development, supported countries to provide high-quality treatment and care for people suffering from the debilitating effects of trachoma and lymphatic filariasis, complementing other major initiatives supporting disease elimination through MDA. With activities in Ethiopia, Cameroon and Burkina Faso and in the global community, the Helen Keller managed MMDP Project was a key player in the global push to eliminate trachoma and lymphatic filariasis as public health problems by 2020.
- Read about the MMDP project’s results, which have been used by the World Health Organization, among other groups working in morbidity management and disability prevention related to trachoma and lymphatic filariasis. Helen Keller Intl continues to support countries like Mali and Niger to provide MMDP services to prevent blindness from trachoma and manage the morbidity and disability caused by lymphatic filariasis. Helen Keller has been engaged in this work for over a decade.
NTDs and Nutrition. There are strong and direct relationships between undernutrition and infectious diseases, including NTDs. Learn how nutrition is an important component of integrated programs to control NTDs:
- The role of nutrition in integrated programs to control neglected tropical diseases. BMC – Medicine (2012)
NTDs, MDA and Success Stories. Helen Keller Intl is committed to working with national governments, the World Health Organization, technical partners, and donor governments to control and eliminate NTDs in countries affected by these maladies. Read about Helen Keller Intl’s recent successes in working closely with national partners in Burkina Faso, Sierra Leone, Mali and Cameroon to support national MDA programs:
- Guinea’s neglected tropical diseases program treats 4.4 million people in 14 days, despite COVID-19. USAID’s Act to End NTDs | West program (2020)
- Schistosomiasis in school age children in Burkina Faso after a decade of preventive chemotherapy. Bulletin of the World Health Organization (2016)
- Successful Control of Soil-Transmitted Helminthiasis in School Age Children in Burkina Faso and an Example of Community-Based Assessment via Lymphatic Filariasis Transmission Assessment Survey. PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases (2016)
- First evidence of lymphatic filariasis transmission interruption in Cameroon: Progress towards elimination. PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases (2017)
- Control of soil-transmitted helminths in school age children in Sierra Leone after a decade of preventive chemotherapy intervention. Infectious Diseases of Poverty (2019)
- Prevalence of trachoma in Kayes region of Mali eight years after stopping mass drug administration. PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases (2018)
NTD News for Africa is Helen Keller Intl’s monthly electronic newsletter which aims to disseminate state-of-the-art research and policy papers to scientists, program planners, policy makers, and opinion leaders working in the field of NTD control in Africa. NTD News for Africa is published in English and, with the generous support of the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine Neglected Tropical Diseases, in French. To subscribe to this newsletter, please click on Subscribe Here for English or Subscribe Here for French.