Neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) are a diverse group of diseases with distinct characteristics that thrive mainly among the poorest populations. The 17 NTDs prioritized by the United Nations World Health Organization (WHO) are endemic in 149 countries and affect more than 1.4 billion people, costing developing economies billions of dollars every year.
In May 2013, the 66th World Health Assembly adopted resolution WHA66.12, which calls for intensified, integrated measures and planned investments to improve the health and social well being of affected populations. WHO is working with member states to ensure implementation of WHA66.12.
These diseases often do not kill; they simply destroy a person’s ability to function in society and often require intensive care. They are called “neglected” because while a great deal of attention is given to diseases like malaria, these diseases do not receive the same kind of attention.
Fortunately, there are medicines that can prevent many of these diseases from occurring and they cost as little as 25¢ per year. In Guilford Rotary, Rotarians are periodically asked to donate their loose pocket change to provide funds for this purpose.
To find out more about this project, including types of NTDs, please download this flyer.
The Guilford Rotarian in charge of the NDT project is Ralph Schoemann.