A Note from the CEO & Board Chair
“2018 was a true landmark year for the END Fund. We saw more treatments delivered than any year prior and surpassed $1 billion worth of treatments delivered since our founding in 2012. In Kenya, we rolled out a groundbreaking triple-drug therapy to treat lymphatic filariasis (LF), while in South Africa we helped elevate NTDs to the global stage in celebration of Nelson Mandela’s legacy. Across 27 countries we trained almost 750,000 health workers to deliver treatments and educate communities on prevention. As we continue to grow in the fight against NTDs your support means more than ever and we look forward to sharing more success with you in the year ahead.”
Highlights from 2018
Kenya Launched Africa’s First Triple-Drug Treatment for lymphatic filariasis
In November of 2018, the first IDA treatment program in Africa was launched as a key step towards achieving elimination of LF in Kenya. Named for the initials of the three-drug combination—ivermectin, diethylcarbamazine citrate, and albendazole—IDA treatment is a new therapy with the potential to reduce the time to treat and break transmission of LF from five years to only two years. In a tremendous effort led by the Kenyan Ministry of Health and supported by a consortium of local and international partners, it was piloted in three key areas along the coast.
Reaching the Last Mile Fund
In 2018 we commenced one of the most ambitious projects we have undertaken— to completely eliminate river blindness and LF from seven countries in Africa and the Middle East in a 10 year period—in an initiative led by His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi. This past year these Reaching the Last Mile Fund (RLMF) programs focused on financing treatment, disease assessment, and mobilizing country Ministers of Health, WHO Country Representatives, and national NTD team members in the various health ministries. By year end, we had started work in all seven countries, of which six—Chad, Ethiopia, Senegal, Mali, Niger, and Yemen— and one key cross-border area in South Sudan, began programmatic work
One person who has been crucial to the RLMF’s river blindness goals is Daniel Boakye, a medical entomologist. From locating fly breeding sites and finding larvae living on vegetation, to being able to sort through and screen the insects in a lab, Daniel has done it all.