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Center-led Guinea Worm Eradication Program Wins Prestigious Prize from Government of Japan

  • Adam Weiss, now director of the Carter Center’s Guinea Worm Eradication Program, treats a girl with an infected Guinea worm in her foot.

    Nuru Ziblim, a Guinea worm health volunteer, educates children on how to use pipe filter when they go to the fields with their families. Pipe filters, individual filtration devices worn around the neck, work similar to a straw, allowing people to filter their water to avoid contracting Guinea worm disease while away from home. (Photo: The Carter Center/L. Gubb)

  • Adam Weiss, now director of the Carter Center’s Guinea Worm Eradication Program, treats a girl with an infected Guinea worm in her foot.

    Volunteers speak to a crowd of people about how to detect Guinea worm disease at a gathering in Dangabol Market, Chad. (Photo: The Carter Center/J. Hahn)

  • Adam Weiss, now director of the Carter Center’s Guinea Worm Eradication Program, treats a girl with an infected Guinea worm in her foot.

    Makoy Samuel Yibi, longtime director of the South Sudan Guinea Worm Eradication Program, talks about transmission of the disease near a water source for Kuron, South Sudan. (Photo: The Carter Center/C. Marin)

  • Adam Weiss, now director of the Carter Center’s Guinea Worm Eradication Program, treats a girl with an infected Guinea worm in her foot.

    In Chad, a Guinea worm specimen is examined under a microscope. (Photo: The Carter Center/J. Hahn)

  • Adam Weiss, now director of the Carter Center’s Guinea Worm Eradication Program, treats a girl with an infected Guinea worm in her foot.

    Two children with Guinea worm disease read a children’s book about the disease. (Photo: The Carter Center/L. Gubb)

  • Adam Weiss, now director of the Carter Center’s Guinea Worm Eradication Program, treats a girl with an infected Guinea worm in her foot.

    A female health worker provides health education about Guinea worm disease in South Sudan. (Photo: The Carter Center/L. Gubb)

  • Adam Weiss, now director of the Carter Center’s Guinea Worm Eradication Program, treats a girl with an infected Guinea worm in her foot.

    A Guinea worm has emerged from a blister in this South Sudanese person’s ankle. (Photo: The Carter Center/L. Gubb)

  • Adam Weiss, now director of the Carter Center’s Guinea Worm Eradication Program, treats a girl with an infected Guinea worm in her foot.

    Adam Weiss, now director of the Carter Center’s Guinea Worm Eradication Program, treats a girl with an infected Guinea worm in her foot. (Photo: The Carter Center)

ATLANTA (Aug. 3, 2022) — The Guinea Worm Eradication Program, led by The Carter Center, has been chosen to receive the Fourth Hideyo Noguchi Africa Prize in the medical services category, the government of Japan announced Wednesday in Tokyo. The prize recognizes the program’s efforts to make Guinea worm disease the first human disease to be eradicated since smallpox in 1980.

“We at The Carter Center are very grateful for this prestigious award from such an important partner,” said Adam Weiss, director of the Guinea Worm Eradication Program. “The Hideyo Noguchi Africa Prize signifies the government of Japan’s high level of interest and involvement in the health and welfare of the people of Africa. We appreciate the support we consistently receive from Consul-General Kazuyuki Takeuchi here in Atlanta.”

The Hideyo Noguchi Africa Prize comprises a citation and a medal for each laureate and an honorarium of 100 million yen (more than 750,000 U.S. dollars at today’s exchange rate). A nominating committee identifies a list of finalists for the prizes, and the prime minister of Japan makes the final decision.

The government of Japan has supported the Carter Center and its partners in the Guinea worm eradication effort since 1989. When The Carter Center assumed leadership of the global Guinea Worm Eradication Program in 1986, an estimated 3.5 million cases occurred annually, mostly in Africa. In 2021, there were just 15 cases. As of the end of June, just two cases had been provisionally reported in 2022.

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Contact: In Atlanta, Adam Weiss, adam.weiss@cartercenter.org
In Atlanta, Consulate-General of Japan, info@aa.mofa.go.jp

The Carter Center
Waging Peace. Fighting Disease. Building Hope.

A not-for-profit, nongovernmental organization, The Carter Center has helped to improve life for people in over 80 countries by resolving conflicts; advancing democracy, human rights, and economic opportunity; preventing diseases; and improving mental health care. The Carter Center was founded in 1982 by former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and former First Lady Rosalynn Carter, in partnership with Emory University, to advance peace and health worldwide.

    

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