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RTI International celebrates elimination of lymphatic filariasis as a public health problem in Cambodia

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, NC – RTI International is pleased to join Cambodia, the World Health Organization and the United States Agency for International Development in celebrating the elimination of lymphatic filariasis as a public health problem in Cambodia. Also known as elephantiasis, lymphatic filariasis causes fluid buildup in the lymph system that can lead to severe disfigurement, as well as social and economic discrimination against those affected.

RTI implements USAID’s ENVISION project, which leads the global fight against seven neglected tropical diseases (NTDs), including lymphatic filariasis (LF), with activities in 19 NTD-endemic countries across Africa, Asia and Latin America. As part of the project, RTI worked with the Ministry of Health in Cambodia to develop their “dossier” which compiles the data needed to prove elimination of lymphatic filariasis as a public health problem. Cambodia was one of the first countries to be validated as having eliminated LF as a public health problem under WHO’s new official process for validation.

“We join the global NTD community in congratulating the Government of Cambodia for this remarkable accomplishment,” said Lisa Rotondo, ENVISION project director at RTI.  “As we aim for global elimination of LF by the year 2020, this success gives clear evidence that our goal is reachable. With numerous other partners, RTI is proud to have played a part.”

Approximately 120 million people around the world have lymphatic filariasis, and more than 1.3 billion are at risk. USAID is working with 24 lymphatic filariasis endemic countries to eliminate the disease by 2020.

ENVISION provides support to 19 NTD-endemic countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America. In 2015, the project supported the treatment of 115 million people for at least one NTD. To learn more about RTI’s work fighting NTDs, click here and follow us on Twitter at @RTIfightsNTDs.

Follow news and updates as part of the 10th anniversary of USAID’s NTD program at #NoMoreNTDs.