World Neglected Tropical Diseases Day
Science & Technology
8th Feb, 2022
World Neglected Tropical Diseases Day (World NTD Day) is observed on January 30 every year.
What are Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTD)?
- NTDs are a group of infections that are most common among marginalised communities in the developing regions of Africa, Asia and the Americas. They are caused by a variety of pathogens such as viruses, bacteria, protozoa and parasitic worms.
- NTDs are especially common in tropical areas where people do not have access to clean water or safe ways to dispose of human waste.
- Examples of NTDs are: snakebite envenomation, scabies, yaws, trachoma, Leishmaniasis and Chagas disease etc.
- These diseases generally receive less funding for research and treatment than malaises like tuberculosis, HIV-AIDS and malaria.
- The 2022 theme is ‘Achieving health equity to end the neglect of poverty-related diseases’.
- The 2022 slogan is “From neglect to care”.
- The first World NTD Day was held on 30 January 2020.
- The proposal to recognise the day was made by the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
- The 74th World Health Assembly endorsed a decision recognizing 30 January as World Neglected Tropical Diseases Day (‘World NTD Day’).
- World NTD Day commemorates the simultaneous launch of the first NTD road map and the London Declaration on NTDs on 30 January 2012.
- For countries where neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) are prevalent and for the global community of partners, this is a new dawn.
NTDs in India
- India is home to the world’s largest absolute burden of at least 11 of these major NTDs.
- NTDs are commonly seen to affect people living in poverty and hence, many people in India are afflicted by these diseases every year.
- The most common NTDs in India: Lymphatic Filariasis, Visceral Leishmaniasis, Rabies, Leptospirosis, Dengue and Soil-Transmitted Helminth Infections (STH).
- As per WHO data, India ranks number 1 in the number of cases for many major NTDs in the world.
- However, India has made tremendous progress in controlling many such diseases.
- Leprosy is no longer a public health concern in the country and mass treatment coverage has also been achieved for Filaria.
- The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has highlighted that India has already eliminated several other NTDs, including guinea worm, trachoma, and yaws.