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Neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) are a group of infectious diseases that are considered “neglected” because they have traditionally received relatively little attention from global governments and health organizations. More than 1.5 billion people suffer from one or more NTDs. This group includes more than 830 million children in the developing world who are infected with one or more of the most common NTDs:
NTDs thrive in places with:
Although these diseases are transmitted in different ways and cause different symptoms, people are often infected with more than one at a time. Communities with many members affected by one or more of these diseases have problems associated with:
As a result, NTDs contribute to a cycle of poverty that traps the world’s poorest individuals and stifles economic growth in developing countries.
An improved understanding of the relationship between NTDs and extreme poverty has led to increased attention from global and national organizations in recent years. Inexpensive, safe and effective drugs are now available to treat some of the most common NTDs. Current efforts to control or eliminate these diseases include:
Vaccines are not currently available to prevent any of the NTDs, but efforts are being made to develop safe and inexpensive vaccines for some of these diseases.
Materials in this section are updated as new information and vaccines become available. The Vaccine Education Center staff regularly reviews materials for accuracy.
You should not consider the information in this site to be specific, professional medical advice for your personal health or for your family's personal health. You should not use it to replace any relationship with a physician or other qualified healthcare professional. For medical concerns, including decisions about vaccinations, medications and other treatments, you should always consult your physician or, in serious cases, seek immediate assistance from emergency personnel.