Neglected tropical diseases

Italy provides funding to support cystic echinococcosis projects in Morocco and Tunisia

05 September 2012 | Geneva
The World Health Organization and Government of Italy today signed an agreement which paves the way for the Italian Ministry of Health to fund projects related to expansion of clinical management of human cystic echinococcosis in Morocco and Tunisia.

From left: Dr Lorenzo Savioli, NTD Director, Dr Francesco Cicogna, MoH Italy, Dr Hiroki Nakatani, ADG HTM and Dr Mario Raviglione, Director STB

The agreement provides for €300 000 to be used to reinforce the decentralization of of diagnostic and therapeutic techniques to rural, hyperendemic areas of these two Mediterranean countries.

“WHO welcomes this significant contribution by the Government of Italy to support the clinical management of one of the most neglected tropical diseases.”said Dr Lorenzo Savioli, Director of the Department of Control of Neglected Tropical Diseases . “Cystic echinococcosis is a considerable public health problem in many countries of the Mediterranean.”

The agreement will focus on:

  • Situation analysis through the collection and evaluation of existing data in the two countries;
  • Training of health personnel – basic, intermediate and advanced;
  • Screening and management of cystic echinococcosis;
  • Monitoring and evaluation, and
  • Acquisition of equipment and tools to facilitate diagnosis and management of the disease.

Morocco and Tunisia were selected for this project because of the availability of epidemiological data and the availability of local experts in these two countries.

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