Recently, the World Health Organization (WHO) released its ‘Global Report on Neglected Tropical Diseases 2024’.

More on the news:

  • The Report is tracking progress towards 2030 targets outlined in the roadmap Ending the neglect to attain the Sustainable Development Goals: a road map for neglected tropical diseases 2021–2030.

Key Findings of the Report:

  • Progress Toward NTD Targets: In 2022, interventions were required for 1.62 billion people, reflecting a 26% decrease from 2010 but is not on track for meeting the 2030 target of a 90% reduction.
  • By 2023, WHO recognised 50 countries for eliminating at least one NTD, marking the halfway point toward the 2030 goal of 100 countries.
  • Treatment and Mortality Trends: Around 848 million people received NTD treatment in 2022, while reported deaths from vector-borne NTDs rose by 22% compared to 2016 by the end of 2022.
  • Program Implementation: Advancements in strategies and integration, including gender-disaggregated data collection.
  • Access to Services: Overall access to water, sanitation, and hygiene is 85.8% in NTD-endemic countries, with 63% among populations needing NTD interventions.
  • Financial Protection: 87.4% of the NTD-vulnerable population is safeguarded from high out-of-pocket health costs.
  • New Inclusions: Noma (cancrum oris, gangrenous stomatitis) was added to the list of NTDs in 2023.
  • Key advocacy events like Global NTD Programme Partners’ Meeting and the Reaching the Last Mile Forum raises NTD visibility in global health discussions and spurred resource mobilization.

About the Neglected Tropical Diseases:

  • NTDs are a diverse group of conditions caused by a variety of pathogens (including viruses, bacteria, parasites, fungi and toxins) and associated with devastating health, social and economic consequences. 
  • It is mainly prevalent among impoverished communities in tropical areas, although some have a much larger geographical distribution. 
  • The epidemiology (the study of how diseases spread within populations and how they can be controlled) of NTDs is complex and often related to environmental conditions. 
  • Many of them are vector-borne, have animal reservoirs and are associated with complex life cycles. 
  • Examples: Buruli ulcer, Dengue, Dracunculiasis, and Leprosy etc.
  • London Declaration on NTDs was adopted on 30th January, 2012 to recognise the global burden of NTDs.

India’s Initiatives to Eliminate NTDs

  • Accelerated Plan for Elimination of Lymphatic Filariasis 
  • National Vector Borne Disease Control Programme 
  • National Kala-azar Elimination Programme

National Leprosy Eradication Programme:

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