The World Health Organization (WHO) has certified Kenya free of dracunculiasis transmission following the recommendation of the International Commission for the Certification of Dracunculiasis Eradication (ICCDE).
During its 12th meeting held at WHO headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland the ICCDE reviewed the report of an International Certification Team that visited Kenya in October 2017 to assess the country’s claim of having eliminated the disease.
“We congratulate Kenya and salute the work of the thousands of health workers and volunteers who braved difficult conditions for decades to achieve this milestone,” said Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General.
“This triumph should inspire us all to overcome diseases of poverty and improve the lives of vulnerable people while leaving no one behind.”
He added that with the help of partners such as The Carter Center, UNICEF and CDC, WHO will redouble its efforts in providing optimal support to Chad, Ethiopia, Mali and South Sudan, the four countries that remain endemic for the disease.
Kenya now becomes the 187th WHO Member State to be certified dracunculiasis-free. Only seven countries remain to be certified.