Historic low number of guinea worm cases reported
15 January 2016 | Geneva −− In 1986, an estimated 3.5 million cases occurred. In 1989, 15 out 20 countries reported 892 955 cases (data from Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Côte d'Ivoire, Ethiopia, Ghana, India, Mauritania, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Pakistan, Togo, Uganda, Yemen).
Through the combined effort of affected countries’ National Guinea worm Eradication Programmes and different stake holders (The Carter Centre, UNICEF, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, DFID) including World Health Organization, the number of cases and countries affected by dracunculiasis or guinea worm disease reduced dramatically in 2015.
In 2015, the disease was confined to 4 countries: Chad, Ethiopia, Mali and South Sudan. By end of November 2015, a total of 22 cases were reported. A reduction of 83% as compared with the 124 cases for the same period in 2014. In 2015, Chad reported 9 cases, which represented 41% of the global total cases. The remaining cases of the 2015 were reported from Ethiopia 3 cases, Mali 5 cases, and South Sudan 5 cases.
South Sudan and Mali contributed to the reduction of cases in 2015, 93% and 88% reduction respectively as compared with cases reported in those two countries in 2014.
The number of cases contained during the January-November 2015 was 38%. In 2015, the number of villages reported cases declined to about20 villages compared with 54 villages in 2014.
During January to November 2015, more than 17 566 rumours were reported. Of which, 95% were investigated within 24 hours. The countries in pre-certification stage are also accelerating their activities on increasing awareness on guinea worm disease and the reward for voluntary reporting of guinea worm disease to the health facility.
At the end of 2015, the World Health Organization has certified 198 countries, territories and areas (belonging to 186 Member States)as free of dracunculiasis, through the recommendation of the International Commission for the Certification of Dracunculiasis.