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Neglected tropical diseases


In addition to the threats malaria and tuberculosis pose to global health, the World Health Organization has identified 17 neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) which take the lives of nearly 540,000 people each year. About 2 billion people, almost one-third of the world’s population, are at risk of contracting an NTD, and more than 1.4 billion people are currently afflicted with one or more NTDs. These diseases include Chagas disease, dengue fever, leprosy, scabies, hookworm and human African trypanosomiasis (sleeping sickness). NTDs surpass both malaria and tuberculosis in causing greater loss of life-years to disability and premature death.

Many Neglected Tropical Diseases cause disfigurement and disability, leading to stigma and societal marginalization. The social, economic, and health burden of NTDs falls primarily on low- and middle- income countries where access to safe water, sanitation and health care is limited. Of the 14 most common NTDs, roughly 80% of infections are caused by soil-transmitted helminths (STH) and schistosomiasis. STH are a group of 3 parasitic worms (roundworms, whipworms, and hookworms) that afflict more than 1 billion people worldwide, including 600 million school-age children. However, many NTDs can be controlled, prevented and even eliminated using low-cost, effective and feasible solutions. The benefits of deworming are immediate and enduring. A controlled trial has shown school-based deworming treatment to reduce school absenteeism by 25%.

Proposed Legislation: H.R.3460 - End Neglected Tropical Diseases Act
Prospective Sponsor: Rep. Christopher H. Smith (NJ)












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Poll Opening Date
July 19, 2021
Poll Closing Date
July 25, 2021


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