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Press Conference: Jimmy Carter and Carter Center Partners Announce Major New Progress Toward Guinea Worm Eradication

Contact: Emily Staub, The Carter Center

Atlanta office, +1-404-420-5126

Former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and Guinea worm disease eradication partners will address the critical juncture facing the international Guinea worm eradication campaign with a major announcement of new progress and funding on Dec. 5, 2008, at The Carter Center in Atlanta.

An ancient and horrible affliction, Guinea worm disease (dracunculiasis) is poised to become only the second disease to be eradicated from Earth, and the first without using vaccines or medicines. Today, less than a fraction of one percent of cases remain in a handful of endemic countries: Sudan, Ghana, Mali, Ethiopia, Niger, and Nigeria.

President Carter and other partners will highlight why we must act now and how others can participate.

Who: Jimmy Carter, founder, The Carter Center, and partner organizations.

What: Press conference at The Carter Center in Atlanta on several important milestones achieved in the campaign to eradicate Guinea worm disease, including major new financial commitments, and what still must be accomplished to finish the job.

When: Friday, Dec. 5, 2008 at 8:30-9:00 a.m. [Media check-in ends at 8:10 a.m.]

Where: Cecil B. Day Chapel, The Carter Center, 453 Freedom Parkway, Atlanta, Ga., 30307.

Guinea Worm Disease: A water-borne disease, Guinea worm is transmitted only by drinking contaminated water. The presence of Guinea worm disease in a geographic area indicates abject poverty, including the absence of safe drinking water. Victims often are unable to go to school, farm, or do other work, resulting in increased poverty. The disease can be controlled through simple measures, such as filtering all drinking water and educating people who are infected to take precautions to prevent transmission. 

Editor's Note:


"Waging Peace. Fighting Disease. Building Hope." A not-for-profit, nongovernmental organization, The Carter Center has helped to improve life for people in more than 70 countries by resolving conflicts; advancing democracy, human rights, and economic opportunity; preventing diseases; improving mental health care; and teaching farmers in developing nations to increase crop production. The Carter Center was founded in 1982 by former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and his wife, Rosalynn, in partnership with Emory University, to advance peace and health worldwide. Please visit to learn more about The Carter Center. 

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