THE CARTER CENTER
Waging Peace.
Fighting Disease.
Building Hope.

Trachoma Control Program

Real Lives, Real Change

Simple Measures, Big Results

May 12, 2014

A leader in the eradication and elimination of diseases, The Carter Center is fighting six preventable diseases — Guinea worm, river blindness, trachoma, schistosomiasis, lymphatic filariasis, and malaria — by using health education and simple, low-cost methods.

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Al Jazeera Profiles Ethiopia Trachoma 'Health Heroes'

May 2, 2014

Ethiopia's pioneering efforts to eliminate blinding trachoma, in partnership with The Carter Center, Lions Clubs International Foundation, and others, are featured in the documentary series "Lifelines: The Quest for Global Health," which will be broadcast outside the United States on Al Jazeera English. The series also will highlight the Center's Guinea Worm Eradication Program in South Sudan and the River Blindness Elimination Program in Uganda.

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Meet Centayo Fengte: A Sight Worth a Thousand Smiles

Nov. 25, 2013

The crowded courtyard at Chuahit Health Clinic in North Gondar, Ethiopia, is full of people — elders talking, mothers swaying side to side to soothe their infants, health workers hurrying back and forth between offices. Suddenly, a small corner of the clinic erupts in laughter.

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Pfizer, Carter Center Celebrate Milestone in Global Campaign to Fight Trachoma

Nov. 5, 2013

On Nov. 5, former U.S. President Jimmy Carter joined Pfizer Inc. CEO Ian Read at Pfizer headquarters in New York City to celebrate major progress in the global campaign against the blinding disease trachoma as the Center prepares to distribute its 100 millionth dose of Zithromax ®, a Pfizer-donated antibiotic used to treat the disease.

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Meet Hajan Hassan: Surgery Brings Hope to Nigerien Grandmother

Oct. 22, 2012

It was late afternoon in Dorum, southern Niger, when a man and his elderly mother rode in on a motorcycle. The woman's calm façade belied the excruciating pain she felt. An hour-long ride outdoors through dusty roads in the midday sun comprised some of the worst conditions a woman with an advanced eye disease could face. But as agonizing as it was, the journey likely saved her eyesight.

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The Carter Center at 30: Leader in Disease Eradication and Elimination

April 9, 2012

The Carter Center has become a global leader in the eradication and elimination of diseases, focusing efforts to build health and hope in some of the poorest and most isolated places on earth.

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Salissou Kane: Niger's Trachoma Control Campaign Employs Lessons Learned in Guinea Worm Fight

Jan. 23, 2012

Completely eliminating a disease from a country twice the size of Texas is no easy task. Salissou Kane, the Carter Center's country representative for Niger learned this time and again during more than two decades fighting Guinea worm in his homeland. Now that the disease has been wiped out nationwide, Kane is using his hard-won knowledge of Niger's complex multicultural communities to tackle to the bacterial eye disease trachoma.

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Maltra Success Measured in Millions

Oct. 27, 2011

From Nov. 5-11, 20,000 health workers and volunteers will walk the countryside of western Amhara region, Ethiopia. Their quest: treat every person at risk—approximately 10 million—for trachoma control and screen as needed for malaria. In this Q&A, Paul Emerson, director of the Center's Trachoma Control Program, explains the remarkable results of these "Maltra"—malaria and trachoma—weeks, a collaborate effort between the Lions Clubs International Foundation and The Carter Center.

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Sadi Moussa: Public Health Worker Begins Third Decade of Improving Lives, Battling Guinea Worm and Trachoma in Mali

Aug. 5, 2011

"I think I have something to share with another country" says Sadi Moussa, explaining why he recently relocated to Mali to help tackle public health problems after almost two decades doing similar work in his home country of Niger.

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Return Visit Confirms Family's Continued Vigilance Against Trachoma

April 11, 2011

Paul Emerson entered the modest hut unannounced, knowing what he was hoping to find, but ready for anything. Emerson — director of the Carter Center's Trachoma Control Program — had visited this family before. In 2005, he had accompanied President and Mrs. Carter to Mosebo village, northwest Ethiopia, to help launch a comprehensive trachoma initiative in the region. A 3-year-old girl had charmed the Carters when she showed them her very own latrine, which would help keep the flies that transmit trachoma from breeding.

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First Treatment for Trachoma in Nigeria Goes to Young Patient

Oct. 18, 2010

In Aloshi village in central Nigeria, four-year-old David Nuhu stands quietly as a health worker measures his height against a brightly colored pole. The health worker will use the measuring stick to carefully calculate what dose of Zithromax® (donated by Pfizer Inc.) will safely treat the little boy's trachoma infection.

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Carter Center Successfully Integrates Antibiotic Distribution, Health Education During Intensive Weeklong Efforts Against Blinding Trachoma, Malaria

April 16, 2010

With a population of approximately 17 million, the Amhara Region of Ethiopia is one of the most severely affected trachoma-endemic areas in the world. There are currently more than 15 million people at risk of infection and approximately 470,000 people visually impaired as a result of trichiasis, the blinding form of the disease.

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Meet Teshome Gebre: Lion of Disease Prevention in Ethiopia

April 16, 2010

Teshome Gebre, the Carter Center's country representative for health programs in Ethiopia, likes to joke that he has been in public health service for what seems like 100 years. Yet, it's impossible to ignore the great joy Teshome has received from a lifetime dedicated to fighting disease in his native Ethiopia.

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Millions Mobilize April 17-23 in Amhara Region For Trachoma Treatments, Malaria Health Education

April 16, 2010

Impoverished communities in Amhara Region, Ethiopia—the world's most trachoma-endemic area—are harnessing an innovative and far-reaching approach to treating and preventing this blinding bacterial infection.

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Medical Student Travels Far to Perform Trichiasis Surgery

March 1, 2010

Mekuria Amare, a health officer in the North Gondar Zone of Ethiopia, is currently completing his clinical training at Gondar University to become a medical doctor. Mekuria initially received training as a health officer, providing him the opportunity to provide general health care to a rural population. In 2007, he was trained by The Carter Center to provide trichiasis surgery at his health post in the remote district of Telemt.

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Meet Yalanbu Zenabu: Former Trichiasis Patient Sees Hopeful Future

Jan. 26, 2010

Three years ago, Yalanbu Zenabu of Botingli, northern Ghana, was consumed by the daily suffering of trachoma.  As a victim of trichiasis, the blinding form of trachoma, her disease had progressed to the stage where her eyelashes scratched against her eye, causing intense pain and debilitation.

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Carter Center Successfully Distributes Nine Million Doses of Antibiotics During Ethiopia MALTRA Weeks

June 17, 2009

With a population of approximately 17 million, the Amhara Region of Ethiopia is one of the most severely affected trachoma-endemic areas in the world. There are currently more than 15 million people at risk of infection and approximately 470,000 people visually impaired as a result of trichiasis, the blinding form of the disease. In addition, the region is susceptible to seasonal malaria epidemics, putting the majority of the population at risk for the potentially fatal disease.

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Nigerien Soap Provides Income, Helps Prevent Blindness

June 24, 2009

It is nearly evening in the desert village of Adorihi in southern Niger, and 36-year-old Aisha Oumarou crouches over her cooking fire carefully mixing oil into a pot on coals. Although the mixture smells faintly of peanuts, the hot dough that Oumarou extracts from the pot and rolls between her hands is not destined to be the evening's meal, but balls of soap.

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Ambitious Goal to End Blindness-Inducing Disease

Oct. 8, 2008

Conventional wisdom says trachoma — the leading cause of preventable blindness worldwide — can only be treated, not eliminated. But Teshome Gebre, The Carter Center's point man for trachoma control in Ethiopia, hopes to defy that wisdom. He is convinced that trachoma's blinding and debilitating effects can be stopped before the end of the next decade, the targeted goal for global trachoma elimination.

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Sudanese Girl Sees Bright Future After Surgery for Trichiasis

July 1, 2008

Due to an extremely high level of advanced-stage trachoma (trichiasis) in Ayod County, Sudan, an eye clinic in Ayod town was set up to help the county health department further the trachoma control activities of Jonglei state's ministry of health. The clinic building was donated by the Economic Housing Group, and construction support was provided from Terrain Services Limited. In late 2007, local nurses were trained to perform trichiasis surgery, supervised by Sidney Katala, an internationally known trichiasis surgeon. One patient, Nyakier Mabor Gai, spoke to Carter Center staff about her life before and after trichiasis surgery.

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Paul Emerson: Fly Expert Tackles Trachoma in Africa

May 1, 2008

Growing up in England, Dr. Paul Emerson dreamed of becoming a scientist and an educator, the kind of individual who would have both the technical knowledge and practical skills to show people how to better their lives. That dream led him first to teach in England and Africa, then to become a medical entomologist, and now to The Carter Center, which he joined three years ago as director of the Trachoma Control Program. "My specialty is the humble house fly and the diseases it transmits," he said. One of the worst of these is trachoma, a bacterial infection of the eyes.

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Many Forgotten Diseases, One Integrated Approach

Dec. 19, 2006

Over the past two decades, The Carter Center, in partnership with Nigerian health authorities, has created a village-based health care delivery infrastructure to treat multiple diseases simultaneously. Thanks to these interventions, children can have the opportunity to grow up no longer fearing the blindness, disfigurement, organ damage, and life-sapping fevers that their parents suffered.

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Trachoma Study in Sudan Shows SAFE Strategy Works

Oct. 27, 2006

Children in the United States may not give grape-flavored cough syrup another thought, but in Eastern Equatoria, Sudan, children look forward to their yearly dose of an antibiotic that tastes like bananas. The medicine, azithromycin, is one part of a strategy designed to prevent blinding trachoma, a bacterial eye disease and leading cause of preventable blindness in the world.

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Education Key to Reducing Trachoma Across Africa

May 1, 2006

"My mother believed you got trachoma from crying," said Neter Nadew, a 36-year-old Ethiopian mother of four who suffers as her mother did from trachoma, a bacterial eye disease that can lead to blindness. Nadew's mother was forced to pluck out her eyelashes to prevent the onset of blindness in the later stages of the disease.

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Dr. Emmanuel Miri: 'Dr. Water' Pours New Life into Rural Nigerian Communities with Carter Center Health Programs

May 1, 2006

His name means "water" and "life" in the Southeastern region of his native Nigeria, and perhaps no name could be more appropriate for Dr. Emmanuel Miri, resident technical adviser for the Carter Center's health programs in Nigeria.

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Trachoma Radio-Listening Club Volunteer Spreads Health Messages Across Ghana

Aug. 24, 2005

Memunatu Alhassan lives in Botingli village in Northern Ghana. She is an active member of her village's radio-listening club and frequently appears on the shows herself. The Carter Center supports the production of trachoma radio shows, pays for airtime, and has provided 250 Freeplay™ radios to the radio-listening clubs.

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Stories From the Field: Yengussie Tebeje

Aug. 31, 2004

Yengussie Tebeje, 55, sits outside her hut next to a small fire in the rural Ethiopian village of Mosebo. As flies dart around and land on her worn face, she describes her struggle against trachoma, a debilitating eye disease.

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Niger Latrine Program Aids Trachoma Prevention

Aug. 31, 2004

An assessment of the Carter Center's latrine project in Niger, undertaken to reduce incidence of trachoma, has shown encouraging results. After one year, household latrines are widely accepted, used and maintained.

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