Initiatives to control trachoma served as the cornerstone of our initial work in Mali. We assisted national efforts to control the disease through antibiotic treatment for the infection and surgical supplies for treatment to reverse the effects of the disease.
Snapshot of Mali:
Mali is among the least developed countries in the world, ranking 175 of 187 on the Human Development Index, a composite of socio-economic indicators. Mali faces significant challenges including widespread poverty and insufficient access to quality healthcare. Critical health issues:
- lower respiratory infections, malaria, diarrheal diseases, and nutritional deficiencies
- more than 10% of the population afflicted with trachoma, a highly infectious neglected tropical disease which has cost thousands of people all or part of their sight
AmeriCares began assisting Mali’s national efforts to control trachoma in 2004, as part of a coalition effort by the World Health Organization for the Global Elimination of Trachoma by 2020.
Caused by the bacterium Chlamydia trachomatis, trachoma is most prevalent where living conditions are crowded and sanitation systems underdeveloped. Repeat and chronic trachoma infections lead to trichiasis, a painful condition leading to scratching and scarring of the cornea, and eventual loss of sight.
AmeriCares worked through a close partnership with the International Trachoma Initiative and Pfizer that donated the medicine toward this global elimination effort.
In addition to the treatment of active infection, AmeriCares provided resources to help the Ministry of Health scale up trichiasis surgery activities, helping thousands of people regain part or all of their sight, and with it, their independence and productivity.
Since 2012, an escalating civil conflict has affected over 1.6 million people in the north regions of the country, a disaster compounded by a severe food crisis in the Sahel region. We have supplied water purification sachets, as well as an Emergency Medical Module to serve 25,000 people displaced in the crisis.
AmeriCares also donates medical products to qualified U.S. health care professionals who are traveling to Mali to provide charitable medical care. Through this program, donated medicines and medical supplies reach impoverished and isolated communities where even basic medical care is inaccessible to the poor or often non-existent. AmeriCares donations cure infections, relieve pain, help patients manage chronic diseases and make life-changing surgeries possible.
Recent News from Mali
AmeriCares has sent a new shipment of emergency medical aid to partners working in Mauritania to curb the spread of deadly diseases including malaria and cholera that persist in crowded camps.
AmeriCares latest emergency aid shipment -- 1 million units of water purification product – has arrived to help families in the Mbera refugee camp in Mauritania. The delivery is part of an ongoing response to the Sahel crisis in West Africa.
Two emergency air shipments of urgently-needed emergency medical aid arrived in Mali in April and May 2013, to help alleviate a critical shortage of medicines in the country’s war-torn North.
Stamford, Conn. - August 16, 2012 - Medicines and water purification supplies from AmeriCares have arrived in Mali, where they will help tens of thousands of people suffering from an escalating food crisis and a recent cholera outbreak.
An AmeriCares shipment of urgently-needed emergency medical aid and water purification sachets are being readied for shipment to Mali, to help 40,000 people suffering amid an escalating food crisis in the Sahel region of West Africa.