Schistosomiasis in Africa: An Emerging Tragedy in Our New Global Health Decade

Despite new information that the disease burden of schistosomiasis in Africa may be equivalent to malaria or HIV/AIDS and a simple annual anthelminthic treatment for this disease is available for less than 50 cents per person including delivery costs, we now know that fewer than 5% of the infected population is receiving coverage. To date, this situation represents one of the first great failures of the “global health decade” that began in 2000. The scaling up of praziquantel manufacture and distribution, together with operational research and new product research and development, would represent a global assault on schistosomiasis.

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