London, 21 February 2011: Malaria Consortium, in collaboration with the Ministry of Health in Southern Sudan and other partners, has been conducting crucial mapping of disease prevalence across the states. This will provide invaluable information in order to proceed with targeted mass drug administration for a range of neglected tropical diseases (NTDs).
With funding from USAID/RTI, Malaria Consortium has mapped the prevalence of elephantiasis (or lymphatic filariasis), intestinal worms and bilharzia (schistosomiasis) in four out of 10 states in Southern Sudan. Little information on the burden and distribution of these NTDs has been available for Southern Sudan but the existing, limited data suggests that 90 percent of the population is likely to be infected with one or more NTD.
By carrying out the mapping, endemic areas can be identified and preventive chemotherapy can be provided to some of the poorest people living in this post-conflict setting, reaching those with the greatest need. With regular drug administrations,millions of Southern Sudanese would be saved from chronic and debilitating infections in a highly cost-effective manner.
Based on the survey results, targeted mass drug administration was delivered to thousands of those most at risk in the mapped areas. These included areas of Northern Bahr-El Ghazal state, endemic for intestinal worms and schistosomiasis, Further treatment rounds in the other states are scheduled.
We have developed a slideshow with images and information from the NTD Mapping project in Southern Sudan. Please click on the image below to see it.