Thursday, 20 January 2011

Northern Nigeria project to eliminate ‘neglected diseases'

The Nigerian government and the NGO called Sightsavers are working to eliminate several diseases spread by water-born parasites.
A recent survey by Sightsavers and the Nigerian Federal Ministry of Health shows seven of every ten children of school age in the northern state of Zamfara are infected with one or more neglected tropical diseases(NTDs).
The World Health Organization has categorized 18 diseases as NTDs which affect over 1.4 billion people around the world. These diseases cause sickness and disability which affect children's mental and physical development. Two of them, trachoma and onchocerciasis, lead to blindness if not treated.
A model primary school supported by UNICEF is located in Furi in Bungudu Local Government Area of Zamfara.
Dayyasi Lawali is a ten-year-old pupil there. He's been living with a parasitic disease called schistosomiasis for several years. If it goes untreated, it can damage internal organs and impair growth and mental development.
Today, with a single dose of the tablet, prazequantel, he is cured of the condition, thanks to a treatment program directed by the community with support from Sightsavers and the Federal Ministry of Health.
Sightsavers is an international charity that works to prevent avoidable blindness while promoting equal opportunity for disabled people in the developing world.
In this case it's working on a program that goes beyond vision care to controlling NTDS.

http://www.africagoodnews.com/development/health/2395-northern-nigeria-project-to-eliminate-neglected-diseases.html

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