Statement by Spokesperson Clayton M. McCleskey on the Elimination of Trachoma in Ghana and Nepal

Press Release Shim

Speeches Shim

For Immediate Release

Wednesday, May 30, 2018
Office of Press Relations
Telephone: +1.202.712.4320 | Email:

This week, the World Health Organization (WHO) recognized the Republic of Ghana and the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal for eliminating trachoma as a public health problem. USAID congratulates the Governments of Ghana and Nepal on this tremendous success.

USAID began supporting the Government of Ghana's efforts to eliminate trachoma in 2006, including technical and financial support for mapping the disease, the delivery of 1.1 million treatments of azithromycin donated by Pfizer, and impact evaluations in 37 endemic Districts. The Ghana Health Services provided ophthalmic nurses to meet sight-saving surgical needs, a concrete demonstration of the country's commitment to sustainability and self-sufficiency.

USAID's support to the Government of Nepal on trachoma began in 2009, and included mapping the disease in 31 Districts, delivering more than 2.4 million treatments of azithromycin donated by Pfizer, and conducting impact surveys in 24 Districts. Highlighting a commitment to self-reliance, the Government of Nepal funded all eye surgeries through a national network of specialty hospitals and clinics.

Over the past 12 years, pharmaceutical companies have given more than $19 billion worth of life-changing drugs, free of charge, to defeat trachoma and other neglected tropical diseases (NTDs). USAID is grateful for the generous support from our private sector partners. Every $1 invested by USAID in NTDs leverages $26 in pharmaceutical donations.

USAID is a global leader in the elimination and control of seven of the most prevalent NTDs, including trachoma. Together with partners, USAID has supported the delivery of 2.3 billion treatments to more than one billion people across 25 countries over the past 12 years.