Schistosomiasis: WHO reports substantial treatment progress for school-age children

©United Nations

8 December 2017 | Geneva –– Countries endemic for schistosomiasis (bilharzia) have substantially scaled-up treatment of school-age children.
Data for 2016 published by the World Health Organization (WHO) show almost 71 million school children were treated, with 12 countries in Africa achieving 75% coverage.
The focus now is to extend treatment to adults, particularly women.
It is estimated that between 20 – 56 million young and adult women suffer from female genital schistosomiasis (FGS).

Egypt leverages domestic funding to eliminate schistosomiasis

People are infected during routine agricultural, domestic,
occupational and recreational activities which expose
them to infested water. © Roland Buzzi

29 November 2016 | Geneva | Cairo −− The World Health Organization (WHO) will support Egypt in implementing a domestically funded US$ 10 million project aimed at eliminating schistosomiasis.

The project, spread out over five years, also involves snail control and the promotion of other public health interventions such as access to safe water, sanitation and health education.

WHO convenes experts to sustain progress against soil-transmitted helminthiases and schistosomiasis

25 November 2016 | Geneva –– An important meeting aimed at accelerating efforts towards achieving coverage of 75% of the world’s preschool-aged and school-aged children treated for intestinal parasitic worms and schistosomes (bilharzia) gets underway on Monday 28 November 2016.
Discussions will include finding ways to encourage the production of medicines; ensure their availability to meet growing demand; future plans to reach adult populations; and, the development of an appropriate methodology to verify interruption of transmission.

WHO urges increased access to praziquantel as schistosomiasis treatment coverage improves

©I. Prondzynsk
School-aged children queueing up for treatment in Nairobi, Kenya

16 February 2016 | Geneva −− The World Health Organization (WHO) is urging countries to implement WHO recommendations on treating all peoples affected by schistosomiasis (bilharzia), beyond the traditional target of treating only school-age children.

Scaled up interventions have significantly improved global coverage of treatment among school-children and other at-risk groups. In 2014, a global coverage of more than 20% of all people requiring treatment for the disease was achieved.

people treated worldwide in 2015

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