The US government began funding the global effort to eliminate neglected tropical diseases (NTD) in 2006, when the US Agency for International Development awarded the government’s first cooperative agreement for the Neglected Tropical Disease Control Program in September 2006, making it a global leader in large-scale implementation of integrated treatment programs for NTDs.
Following on the heels of the first contract, the Agency awarded FHI 360 two five-year cooperative agreements in September 2010, aimed at building on the foundations of the first track by supporting national health ministries and other government entities in five African and three Asian countries as they scale up their local integrated NTD control activities. Subsequently, END in Africa received a three-year extension, running through September 2018.
FHI 360’s END in Africa and END in Asia programs, launched in October 2010, support the countries’ efforts to plan, deliver and monitor preventive chemotherapy for NTD control, while simultaneously strengthening their NTD program administrative capacity from the local to the national level.
END program partners and sub-grantees assist the countries in coordinating local NTD program activities and provide capacity building in financial management, drug forecasting and supply chain management, program monitoring and evaluation, and knowledge management services to the countries.
To date, the END in Africa project has achieved all major anticipated activities outlined in the preceding Semi-Annual Reports. Major program activities and accomplishments include the provision of:
- MDA was done for schistosomiasis (SCH) in the first half of FY 2013 in Burkina Faso, Ghana, Niger, Sierra Leone and in one district in Togo. In Niger, MDAs were conducted for lymphatic filariasis (LF)-soil transmitted helminthiasis (STH) and trachoma. In Ghana, the second round MDA for highly endemic oncho districts took place. In addition, Ghana treated 8 communities in 6 districts that had reported recrudescence of trachoma during the surveillance phase. Sierra Leone conducted MDA for LF in the two Western Area districts; in addition, both Sierra Leone and Burkina Faso conducted MDA for LF-onchocerciasis (oncho)-STH in all targetted areas. Togo also distributed the first round of in districts highly endemic for STH and oncho.
- Overall project administration, coordination, and grant management, including supporting the countries in meeting USAID’s reporting, spending and cost sharing requirements.
- Support and technical assistance for national NTD control program (NTDCP) monitoring and evaluation (M&E) activities, such as completing World Health Organization (WHO) surveys, developing country work plans, and compiling, assessing, reporting and interpreting mass drug administration (MDA) data. In the first half of FY 2013, END in Africa staff trained NTDCPs on the new program workbooks and in collaboration with Envision program partner RTI, reviewed and streamlined the quality of the data captured.
- Support for countries in developing projections of future NTD drug needs, drug procurement and creating capacity building plans for improving drug supply chain management (SCM), national NTD program financial performance, monitoring and evaluation, social mobilization, and other activities.
- Technical assistance for improving SCM and support for customs clearance of drug imports.
- Financial sampling of NTD country program MDA expenditures.
According to currently available data, the END in Africa project provided more than 89.1 million NTD treatments to over 44.1 million people in Burkina Faso, Niger, Sierra Leone, Togo and Ghana.
Photo Credit: Helen Keller International
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