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Chad

Trachoma has been a public health problem in Chad since the 1970s. In 2016, Sightsavers distributed more than 2.3 million antibiotic treatments to control the spread of trachoma in the country.

Our work in Chad

Chad is one of the countries that implements the SAFE strategy, a public health approach endorsed by the World Health Organization that aims to control the spread of trachoma.

The SAFE acronym describes the four methods used to control the disease.

  • Surgery: to stop eyelashes from rubbing against the eyeball and helping to halt the cycle of repeated infection that can lead to blindness.
  • Antibiotics: medication called Zithromax® is used to treat the trachoma infection and reduce the spread of the disease. The treatment is usually repeated annually for three or more years.
  • Facial cleanliness: teaching local communities the importance of face washing, to prevent the infection being spread through contact with an infected person’s eyes or nose.
  • Environmental improvements: to improve access to water and basic sanitation to reduce exposure and re-infection, and eliminate the conditions in which flies breed.

Sightsavers is leading a five-year SAFE programme in Chad on behalf of the International Coalition for Trachoma Control, funded by the UK government’s Department for International Development.

A schoolboy splashes water on his face to learn about facewashing, as part of a SAFE initiative in Senegal.

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More about our work

Trachoma patient Amadu Asama from Ghana is surrounded by her grandchildren following her successful operation.
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BBC invites Sightsavers to discuss trachoma elimination

Sightsavers Director of Neglected Tropical Diseases Simon Bush was invited onto the radio programme to talk about whether the end is in sight for trachoma.

A girl in Senegal is measured with a dose pole to find out how much medication she needs to take, as part of a mass drug administration campaign to prevent the spread of trachoma.
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WHO announces progress on trachoma elimination

In 2016, 85 million people were treated with an antibiotic to protect against trachoma, according to new data from the World Health Organization.

Aminata Gueye is wearing a dark top, sitting at a desk, talking.
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Sightsavers is known for its work on NTD elimination and eye health. Not so many people, perhaps, know we also work on social inclusion and disability rights.

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