WHO Africa Region NTDs conference

ILEP representatives participated in the meeting of NTD programme managers in Addis Ababa in July.

The three-day meeting started with a review of progress on the WHO Roadmap on NTDs from 2012-2020, and went on to look at progress in devising the new 2021-2030 Roadmap. Special topics were also discussed: domestic financing, information systems, laboratory strengthening, disease management and disability prevention. 

In the AFRO Region, NTDs are categorised into the PCT (preventive chemotherapy) group and the CM (case management) group. It was good hearing Dr Mwele Ntuli Malecela (director of the WHO global NTDs department) point out that this categorisation needs to change, since NTDs like leprosy have both preventive and case management elements.  

Benedict Quao (Ghana), Christian Johnson (FRF) and Geoff Warne, all of whom are on the leadership team of the Global Partnership for Zero Leprosy, led a side event on GPZL’s country model for zero leprosy. This was well attended by francophone and anglophone programme managers, with a very productive Q&A session. I appreciated how welcome partners are in consultations in this region. 

For more on the country model, visit https://zeroleprosy.org/about-the-partnership/country-model/. The model was recently piloted in Nepal, and there’s an initial report on that experience at https://zeroleprosy.org/mission-to-nepal/.