Boko Haram and Africa’s Neglected Tropical Diseases
Sabin President Dr. Peter Hotez comments on the Nigerian-based militant group Boko Haram and their adverse impact on existing Neglected Tropical Disease (NTD) elimination programs.
Currently the four nations under threat by Boko Haram account for approximately one third each of the 169 million people at risk for onchocerciasis (river blindness), and the estimated 472 million people who require mass treatment for lymphatic filariasis (LF), elephantiasis, in Africa. Moreover, transmission of Gambian human African trypanosomiasis (HAT) still occurs in Cameroon, Chad, and possibly Niger.
"I am concerned that the expansion of Boko Haram into West and Central Africa could have important consequences for the spread of the vector-borne NTDs highlighted above. " Dr. Hotez said.