All school going-age children in the country would be dewormed once a year to protect them from contracting Lymphatic Filariasis and Onchocerciasis, Dr Kofi Asemanyi-Mensah, the National Programme Manager of the Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs) has announced.
Lymphatic Filiariasis (elephantiasis) and Onchocerciasis (river blindness) are among the five NTDs endemic in the country.
Dr Asemanyi-Mensah said this at the opening session of the national launch of the Mass Drug Administration (MDAs) against Onchocerciaisis on Monday in Sunyani.
The Mass Drug Administration is scheduled for August 9 to 22, this year.
On the theme “Face NTDs, End the Neglect through Effective and Quality MDAs”, the launch was attended by public health directors across the country, as well as other governmental agencies including Ghana Education Service and the Information Services Department.
Dr Asemanyi-Mensah explained though Oncho was endemic in 11 hotspot districts, yet the campaign was targeted at 137 districts in 15 regions, and expressed appreciation to the World Health Organisation (WHO) and other development partners for their support in helping to manage NTDs in the country.
He said the Ghana Health Service (GHS) would intensify surveillance and monitoring in the Oncho endemic prone communities and stressed commitment to eliminate the disease by 2025.
Dr Asemanyi-Mensah called on the Regional Health Directorates to re-launch and intensify public education on the MDAs at the regional levels to achieve the desirable outcomes.