Ascend West and Central Africa could play an important role in mitigating the impact of COVID-19 in Africa, according to an opinion piece by David Molyneux, emeritus professor and former director of the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine (LSTM).Read the opinion piece
The UK aid-funded programme is managed by four leading development organisations and led by Sightsavers. Together we will support the delivery of around 400 million treatments to help several countries to reach the elimination threshold for diseases and promote long-term sustainable change.
We will work alongside ministries of health, communities and partners including the World Health Organization (WHO) in endemic countries to deliver one of the most significant NTD programmes in history.
The video below shows the work already achieved to tackle lymphatic filariasis in the Bijagos Islands in Guinea-Bissau. The Ascend programme will build on this work, and that of many other programmes, to help us treat these devastating diseases.
The Ascend West and Central Africa programme and its partners are using their expertise to help countries combat the pandemic while preserving the gains made in their fight against NTDs.Read the blog
In the first year of the programme, Ascend West and Central Africa delivered nine million more treatments than originally envisioned. Other achievements include:
The Ascend consortium is made up of four of the UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office’s (FCDO) established partners, including: Sightsavers, Mott MacDonald, the SCI Foundation and the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine. Each partner is responsible for NTD programming in collaboration with national governments. Ascend will build on this by working with partners and small/medium enterprises to fight the diseases and eliminate them wherever possible.
Every person has a part to play in eliminating these diseases. Together we can enhance the health, quality of life and future wellbeing of people affected by these painful, poverty-trapping conditions.
Sightsavers and partners are supporting ministries of health in 13 countries:
The Ascend Learning and Innovation Fund will provide grants to support a range of NTD-focused activities, from research to large-scale implementation, across 13 countries in West and Central Africa.Find out more