5 year bid to contain neglected tropical diseases launched

Trans Nzoia deputy Governor Dr. Stanley Tarus (left), the Director for WASH&NTDs at Amref Health Africa Mr. Martin Muchangi and county’s health CEC Claire Wanyama follow proceedings during the launch of the initiative on September 10, 2021. Photo/Courtesy

The ministry of health has launched a five year partnership with Amref Health Africa  seeking to eradicate intestinal worms and Bilharzia in four  counties  in a bid to eradicate neglected tropical diseases.

The project which is funded by END Fund organisation to the tune of Sh 160 million will focus on breaking the transmission strategy (BTS) for the diseases in Trans Nzoia, Bungoma, Kakamega and Vihiga counties.

“The programme will focus on working with stakeholders to administer mass drug administration targeting everyone in the region,” said Mr. Martin Muchangi, the Director for WASH & NTDs at Amref Health Africa.

Mr. Muchangi who spoke in Kitale said the success of the project will also involve carrying out surveys and engaging communities in the administration of the drugs, for instance deworming which will target everyone.

Trans Nzoia deputy Governor Dr. Stanley Tarus said the county government is committed to ensuring there is goodwill from all stakeholders to allow for the roll out of the programme by debunking conspiracy myths.

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“We are calling on faith based organisations to allow the smooth execution of this programme since the drugs being administered have been declared safe for human beings by the medical experts,” said Dr. Tarus.

The county’s health executive committee member Claire Wanyama said they are focusing on boosting hygienic conditions in schools in the region to contain the spread of the diseases that are transmittable via soil.

“The county government through the public health docket will ensure there is a high level sanitation in our schools to reduce the exposure of learners to the two diseases which are soil-borne,” said Mrs Wanyama.

The area county assembly’s health committee chairman Daniel Kaburu commended the initiative saying it will go a long way in ensuring the health effects of the two diseases are contained, especially among children.

The END Fund organisation is a philanthropic initiative solely dedicated to ending the most common neglected tropical diseases (NTDs).