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NTD activities in Africa in the COVID-19 era: the need for a ‘hybrid’ approach in COVID-endemic times

Not restarting mass drug administration (MDA) will not only enhance the risk of NTD transmission, but will fail to leverage behaviour change messaging on the importance of hand and face washing and improved sanitation – a common strategy for several NTDs that also reduces the risk of COVID-19 spread.

We believe that unless MDA and morbidity management activities resume, achievement of NTD targets as projected in the new WHO Roadmap (2020-2030) will be deferred, the aspirational goal of NTD programmes to enhance universal health coverage (UHC) jeopardised and the call to ‘leave no one behind’ a hollow one. Hence, we outline what implementing this approach, which aims to strengthen health systems, and facilitate integration and cross-sector collaboration, will look in the short, medium and long term.

Publication date: October 2020

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