Neglected tropical diseases

Preventive Chemotherapy and Transmission Control (PCT)

PCT focuses on diseases for which a strategy exists as well as on tools and the availability of safe and effective drugs that make it feasible to implement large-scale preventive chemotherapy.

The diseases include cysticercosis, dracunculiasis (guinea-worm disease), foodborne trematode infections, lymphatic filariasis, onchocerciasis, schistosomiasis and soil-transmitted helminthiasis. Blinding trachoma control through the SAFE strategy – combining drug treatment with hygiene and environmental management – can be linked to helminth control interventions to improve the overall health of affected communities.

Preventive chemotherapy in human helminthiasis

Helminth infections impose a great burden on poor populations in the developing world. Yet there are robust, low-cost and effective public health interventions that can relieve that burden and enable people in poor settings to lead better lives. Preventive anthelminthic chemotherapy aims at using available anthelminthic drugs either alone or in combination as a public health tool for preventing morbidity due to more than one form of helminthiasis at once.

The emphasis of preventive chemotherapy is therefore on the best, coordinated use of drugs rather than on specific forms of helminthiasis. The greatest challenge is to expand regular anthelminthic drug coverage as a public health intervention to reach all at risk of morbidity induced by helminth diseases.

Monitoring drug coverage for preventive chemotherapy

Monitoring, which measures process indicators, should be carried out at the district level, as well as at provincial, national, regional and global levels.

Apart from ensuring that activities are being implemented in the agreed manner, effective monitoring allows decision-makers to stay aware of all problems and constraints that may slow progress, and provides the information they may need to refine their planning and implementation of programme activities.

Field manuals

fact buffet

Preventive Chemotherapy

One of Fivestrategies recommended by WHO to prevent and control NTD's

Refer to page 21

in Figures

72 CountriesThe number of countries reported treatment data for 2011

Full article [pdf 388kb]

and Numbers...

728 MillionNumber of people reached by preventive chemotherapy in 2011

Full article [pdf 646kb]

Planning, requesting medicines and reporting

Country profiles

PCT databank

Information resources

Latest News!

19 April 2013 | Geneva
Rolling out and scaling up integrated preventive chemotherapy for selected neglected tropical diseases. Weekly Epidemiological Record, No16, 2013, 88, 161–166.


11 January 2013 | Geneva
Monitoring and evaluation of preventive chemotherapy. Estimated number of people covered by preventive chemotherapy: update for 2010 and 2011. Weekly Epidemiological Record, No.2, 2013, 88, 17–28.