Neglected, Tropical & Vector-borne diseases programme

Neglected ('forgotten') diseases are a set of infectious diseases, many of them parasitic, that primarily affect the most vulnerable populations.

These populations include the poorest of the poor, the most marginalized, and those with the least access to health services, especially impoverished people living in remote rural areas and urban shantytowns. Dealing with these poverty-related diseases requires a more integrated and multi-disease approach that includes multisectoral action, piggy-backed initiatives, and cost-effective interventions to reduce the negative impacts that these diseases have on the health, social, and economic well-being of all people in the Americas.

AHO recognises the diversity of neglected tropical diseases, their causative agents and relevant vectors and intermediate hosts, their epidemic potential (such as for dengue, human rabies of canine origin and leishmaniasis), and their morbidity, mortality and associated stigmatisation.

AHO programme of action

(1) to ensure continued country ownership of programmes for neglected tropical disease prevention, control, elimination and eradication;

(2) to further strengthen the disease surveillance system especially on neglected tropical diseases targeted for eradication;

(3) to expand and implement, as appropriate, interventions against neglected tropical diseases in order to reach the targets agreed in the Africa Plan to Combat Neglected Tropical Diseases as set out in the roadmap for accelerating work to overcome the global impact of neglected tropical diseases by;

(a) ensuring that resources match national requirements and flow in a sustainable manner as a result of thorough planning and costing of prevention and control activities and detailed analysis of associated expenditures;

(b) enabling improvement of the management of the supply chain, in particular through forecasting, timely procurement of quality-assured goods, improved stock-management systems, and facilitating importation and customs clearance;

(c) integrating neglected tropical diseases control programmes into primary health care services and vaccination campaigns, or into existing programmes where feasible, in order to achieve greater coverage and reduce operational costs;

(d) ensuring appropriate programme management and implementation through the development, sustenance and supervision of a cadre of skilled staff (including other sectors than health) at national, district and community levels;

(4) to advocate predictable, long-term, international financing for the control of neglected tropical diseases;

(5) to enhance and sustain national financial commitments, including resource mobilization from sectors other than health;

(6) to strengthen capacity for prevention and control of neglected tropical diseases,

strengthening research, in order to accelerate implementation of the policies and strategies designed to achieve the targets in various resolutions related to specific neglected tropical diseases as well as in the roadmap;

(7) to strengthen national capacity for monitoring and evaluation of the impact of interventions against neglected tropical diseases to devise plans for achieving and maintaining universal access to and coverage with interventions against neglected tropical diseases, notably:


to provide prompt diagnostic testing of all suspected cases of neglected tropical diseases and effective treatment with appropriate therapy of patients in both the public and private sectors at all levels of the health system including the community level;

(b) to implement and sustain coverage with preventive chemotherapy of at least 75% of the populations in need, as a prerequisite for achieving goals of disease control or elimination;

(c) to improve coordination for reducing transmission and strengthening control of

neglected tropical diseases taking into account social determinants of health, through provision of safe drinking-water, basic sanitation, health promotion and education, vector control and veterinary public health