Qatar Fund for Development commits $3 million to eradicate Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs)
Dr. Matashidiso Moeti, WHO Regional Director of Africa and Mr. Misfer Hamad Al-Shahwani, Deputy Director General for Development Projects, QFFD have signed a $3 million USD agreement to eliminate neglected tropical diseases.
The funding will help improve ongoing efforts by the Expanded Special Project for Elimination of Neglected Tropical Diseases (ESPEN).
ESPEN is a five-year project created in 2016 by the WHO Regional Office for Africa. It aims to mitigate the burden of five prevalent Neglected Tropical Diseases in Africa which include Soil Transmitted Helminthiasis (STH), Onchocerciasis (Oncho), Schistosomiasis (SCH), Trachoma (TRA) and Lymphatic Filariasis (LF).
Mr. Al-Shahwani stated:
“The Qatar Fund for Development considers healthcare as one of the highest priority sectors, being part of the Sustainable Development Goals notably the third goal to ensure healthy lives and well-being for everyone. More than 70% of countries and territories that report the presence of NTDs are low income or lower-middle income economies. Therefore, this kind of project aligns with the State of Qatar's goal to help those in need around the world.”
“This contribution will help African countries to control and eliminate these NTDs, and thus support poverty alleviation, improve economic productivity, and ensure a decent life for affected people in Africa.”
In collaboration with the Ministries of Health and other partners, ESPEN intends to provide preventative treatment across all endemic countries in the region by 2020.
From 2018-2020, the funding will support conflict zones in Africa along with at-risk populations from urban or rural informal settlements. It will measure progress towards the elimination of NTDs and support the strengthening of information systems for evidence-based decision making.
This agreement aligns with Qatar’s commitment to helping others in need and the Qatar Fund for Development’s vision of promoting justice and peace through sustainable development.
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Photo Credits: WHO