Neglected tropical diseases

Neglected tropical diseases: unprecedented 979 million people treated in 2015 alone

30 September 2016 ¦ Geneva –– The World Health Organization has released data for 2015 showing 979 million people were treated for at least one neglected tropical disease in 2015 alone.

Considered as a monumental public health achievement, it involved reaching poor people both in marginalized rural areas as well as in underserved urban settings.

Human rabies: better coordination and emerging technology to improve access to vaccines

28 September 2016 | Geneva –– The World Health Organization (WHO) is collaborating with partners, stakeholders and agencies to ensure a continued supply of human and dog vaccines and rabies immunoglobulins to sustain global efforts to eliminate human rabies by 2030.

WHO is also closely following the potential benefits that convergent technology can bring to facilitate the delivery of vaccines and immunoglobulins to remote rabies endemic areas and regions.

© Anne-Marie Labouche/ WHO

WHO and Gilead Sciences extend collaboration against visceral leishmaniasis

27 September 2016 | Geneva ––The World Health Organization (WHO) and Gilead Sciences have signed a new agreement that allows the pharmaceutical company to donate medicines for the treatment of visceral leishmaniasis.

Under the new 5-year collaboration and until 2021, Gilead Sciences have also agreed to provide financial assistance for the expansion of leishmaniasis surveillance and control.

Visceral leishmaniasis is endemic in more than 80 countries worldwide.

Treatment against visceral leishmaniasis, South Sudan © J. A. Ruiz Postigo / WHO

WHO calls for robust global efforts to end transmission of leprosy infection

22 September 2016 | Geneva | New Delhi | Beijing −− The World Health Organization (WHO) has called on countries to pilot innovative approaches to tackle continued transmission of leprosy.
Delegates attending the 19th International Leprosy Congress agreed to push for early detection, prevention and treatment and work to end the ongoing stigma associated with the disease.
The meeting took place in Beijing, People’s Republic of China from 19–21 September 2016.

©Ed Hanley

South East Asia reaffirms commitment to defeat neglected tropical diseases

6 September 2016 | Colombo, Sri Lanka −− Health ministers of WHO South-East Asia Region have reaffirmed their commitment to achieve time-bound targets to control, eliminate and eradicate neglected tropical diseases.

These diseases continue to affect marginalized populations and at least one neglected tropical disease is endemic in each country of the WHO South-East Asia Region.

Opening of the Sixty-ninth WHO Regional Committee meeting for South East Asia

Dracunculiasis: 11 confirmed human cases reported from 3 out of 4 remaining endemic countries

22 August 2016 | Geneva −− The number of confirmed human cases of dracunculiasis (guinea-worm disease) rises to 11 with 5 cases reported from Chad – the highest number so far from a single country endemic for the disease. Chad has also seen a significant increase in the number of dogs infected with the worm.
In South Sudan, surveillance activities have continued in almost all endemic villages despite safety concerns by the country’s Guinea-Worm Eradication Programme although the recent escalation of the conflict there remains a major concern.

©WHO. WHO staff delivering supplies to Juba Teaching Hospital
in response to the conflict in Juba, August 2016

Sleeping sickness: WHO scales-up data management training amid record low cases

10 August 2016 | Geneva –– Over the past 15 years, WHO-supported national control programmes have substantially decreased new cases of human African trypanosomiasis (sleeping sickness) largely through the application of existing control tools.

To sustain progress, WHO is supporting the training of health officers in data analysis and mapping.

The aim is to expand knowledge on the management of information on the occurrence and geographical distribution of the disease.

©Ruiz Postigo J. A.
Member of a mobile laboratory team proceeding with the puncture of lymph nodes for microscopic detection of trypanosomes

fact buffet


99%of people infected live mostly in rural areas of 31 African countries.

Fact sheet on onchocerciasis

Chagas disease

8 millionpeople estimated to be infected worldwide, mostly in Latin America.

Fact sheet on Chagas disease


22 casesoccurred in 2015 in only 4 countries in Africa.

Fact sheet on guinea-worm disease

One of the biggest challenges in the control of the Aedes Egypti mosquito is its adaptation and resilience. Watch Dr. Raman Velayudhan’s comments.