Niger is a vast, land-locked Sahelian country with the majority of its population living along the border with Nigeria and along the Niger River. It was ranked 167/169 on the Human Development Index (UNDP, 2010) and has one of the world’s highest under-five mortality rates. Niger also has the world’s highest population growth rate and total fertility rate.

Neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) affect all 42 health districts (HDs) in Niger, putting some 17 million people at risk of contracting one or more diseases. NTDs are debilitating and disproportionately affect the poor and vulnerable, particularly women and children.

Four of the five neglected tropical diseases targeted by the USAID NTD Control Program are highly prevalent in the country; onchocerciasis has been eliminated as a public health problem in the five health districts where it once was endemic. While lack of awareness, unsafe health practices, and limited access to safe water and sanitation continue to present challenges, Niger’s NTD program (NTDP) has made good progress, particularly against trachoma. Nevertheless, LF, schistosomiasis (SCH), soil-transmitted helminthiasis (STH), and trachoma continue to be threats in Niger and require continued attention and support from USAID’s END in Africa project and other partners.

The designated subgrantee in Niger for the FHI 360-managed END in Africa project is Helen Keller International (HKI).

Achievements in Niger

  • Niger has mapped all 7 NTDs and has nationwide mass drug administration (MDA).
  • Almost two-thirds (62.9%) of the country’s health districts (HDs) with trachoma, or 22 of 35 HDs, have reached the threshold to stop MDA for trachoma at the district level.
  • More than one-quarter (25.8%) of HDs with lymphatic filariasis (LF), or 8 of 31 HDs, have reached the threshold to stop MDA for LF.

News Affecting Niger

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