Neglected Tropical Diseases

Neglected Tropical Diseases

Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs) have been included in the HSSP because of their potential to affect more people and their subsequent effects. The prevalence for Schistosomiasis ranges from 0 to 43% with 30% average in children attending school. The prevalence for blindness is currently at 1% and while Leprosy prevalence is 0.5% with fluctuations yearly from 500-700 cases. Risk factors include poor hygiene, sanitation and swimming in infected water.

Trypanosomiasis and onchocerciasis also still remain significant diseases in the EHP and require urgent attention. Most of the NTDs require mass drug administration to treat, control and prevent their occurrence. However, their continuous presence in the communities is a sign of poor vector control and lack of access to screening and treatment.

Current health promotion emphasis:

  • Prevent spread of infection by drinking of safe, washing hands with soap or ash before eating and after using the toilet
  • Make water safe by boiling or treating with chlorine
  • Use the toilet and avoid open defecation
  • Avoid swimming in infected water to prevent contracting Bilhazia (Schistosomiasis)
  • Protect from tsetse flies bites that spread sleeping sickness (Trypanosomiasis)
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