Sunday, February 22, 2009

The Carter Center

In 1986, former President Jimmy Carter established the Guinea Worm Eradication Campaign, which since then has reduced the number of guinea worm cases from about 3.5 million cases to less than 5,000, about 99.7 of the cases. Guinea worm could be the first disease to be eradicated without a vaccine or medicine, and the campaign’s efforts have been relatively cost-effective. The Carter Center has received grants from the Gates Foundation, as well as other donor organizations, summing up to a total of about 72 million U.S. dollars. However, the final cases of guinea worm are difficult to track, especially because guinea worm has a one year incubation period. Today, there are only six African nations, Sudan, Ghana, Mali, Ethiopia, Nigeria, and Niger, in which guinea worm cases have been found. If the last case is found and controlled, then guinea worm could become the second disease to be eradicated, after smallpox.

Details can be found here: