The 11th Annual Neglected Tropical Diseases conference

Participants attending the 11th Annual Neglected Tropical Disease conference being held in Nairobi

The Director of Medical Services, Dr. Jackson Kioko has affirmed the Ministry’s commitment towards the control of Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTD) by increasing financial support and political will to achieve that goal.

In a speech read on his behalf by the Head, Quality Assurance and Standards, Dr. Anne Wamae during the 11th Annual Neglected Tropical Diseases Conference in Nairobi today, the DMS said the ministry has trained and deployed staff, equipped regional labs and deliberately built capacity in mapping of NTDs and monitoring of interventions.

The theme of the two-day event is ‘Partnership towards achievement of the global goals for control, elimination and eradication of Neglected Tropical Diseases’.

Dr. Kioko said the second Kenya National Strategic Plan for Control of Neglected Tropical Diseases (2016-2020), outlines the approaches with which control and elimination of all NTDs of public health importance will be pursued and achieved, saying these diseases remain a major problem mostly due to poverty, lack of safe water, proper sanitation, hygiene education and housing

‘’By building on past successes, the ministry aims to foster and build more partnerships through effective advocacy, which in turn calls for a strong coordination mechanism, resulting in a well-integrated Control Program. Four years ago, the NTD Program was established within the Ministry to spearhead resource mobilization and leverage cost cutting through a well-coordinated, integrated and efficient Program,’’ he added.

He disclosed that the Kenya National school based deworming program, which the Ministries of Health and Education partner in its implementation is a success story, with an estimated 80% of all eligible school-age children receiving preventive chemotherapy annually, and therefore reducing absenteeism from school by about 25%.

The further said the Lymphatic Filariasis control program, recently re-launched in 2015 is currently in its 3rd year of consistent implementation, and that more than 2.5 million people who are at risk of morbidity, disability and stigmatization are receiving drugs every year within the coast region.

This, he said has put the country well on course towards achieving the global goal of eliminating Lymphatic Filariasis by the year 2020. This year, Kenya is looking forward to being declared Guinea worm free.

Head of Quality Assurance and Standards in the Ministry of Health Dr. Anne Wamae addresses the 11th Annual Neglected Tropical Disease conference being held in Nairobi.

The Coordinator of Neglected Tropical Diseases Programme, Dr Sultan Matendechero addresses the 11th Annual Neglected Tropical Disease conference being held in Nairobi