From The Huffington Post:
“More than 1 billion people on the planet suffer from illnesses that the world pays little attention to.
Neglected tropical diseases are a group of at least 18 diseases that primarily affect people living in poverty in tropical regions of the world and are virtually unknown elsewhere, according to the World Health Organization.
These are diseases like river blindness, which has infected 18 million people worldwide and caused blindness in 270,000 people; or elephantiasis, a leading cause of disability worldwide, which affects over 120 million people and can cause severe swelling of the body parts, usually the legs or the scrotum.
While only some of these illnesses can be fatal, many of them can cause lifelong disabilities or disfigurement. And even though many neglected tropical diseases are preventable and treatable, getting proper medical care to the people who are most vulnerable can be challenging, as the diseases primarily affect people in high-poverty communities with limited access to health services.”