WHO targets to reduce snakebite deaths by 50%

WHO targets to reduce snakebite deaths by 50%

WHO is planning to launch a new strategy to cut down the numbers of deaths and cases of disability due to snakebite envenoming by half over the next 12 years.

The strategy targets the affected communities and their health systems and aims at ensuring access to safe, effective and affordable treatment such as antivenoms and ancillary medical care.

The programme also prioritises to improve and strengthen the production and distribution of life-saving antivenoms and other necessary commodities needed to treat snakebites.

Snakebite envenoming is a neglected tropical disease that affects 1.8–2.7 million people each year. WHO reveals that the life-threatening disease claims for 81,000–138,000 lives, causing 400,000 cases of permanent disability every year.

WHO will work to encourage research on new treatments, diagnostics and health device breakthroughs that can improve the treatment outcome and recovery of the infected victims.

The strategy will be instigated on 23rd May 2019 at the meeting hosted by governments of the Republic of Costa Rica and Federal Republic of Nigeria in Geneva, Switzerland.

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