Sightsavers Reports

Neglected tropical diseases: policy brief

September 2013

Neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) are a group of 17 parasitic and bacterial infections that affect more than 1.4 billion of the world’s poorest people.

Together, these diseases represent the fourth largest disease burden of all communicable diseases globally. NTDs are most prevalent in remote rural areas, urban slums and in conflict zones. Some NTDs kill and others cause severe and often lifelong physical impairment, particularly affecting women and children.

NTDs are diseases that primarily affect people living in poverty. They reduce economic productivity, by preventing individuals from being able to work or care for themselves or their families. NTDs prevent children from growing and learning and can limit access to education.

There is increasing evidence that demonstrates that control and elimination of these diseases will significantly reduce illness, social exclusion and mortality.

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Neglected tropical diseases
Namakau has her eyes examined by a health worker, who shines a torch into her eye.
Sightsavers Reports

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Two medical staff clean eyes of men in traditional african dress.
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