Last month, Evidence Action’s Deworm the World Initiative and the Government of Kenya announced the results of the second Kenya National School-Based Deworming Programme. This was the largest deworming exercise ever conducted in the country, targeting soil-transmitted helminthes (STH, common worms) and schistosomes (which cause bilharzia).
The programme was highly successful, and national targets were surpassed!
Notably, more than 6.4 million children were successfully dewormed, exceeding the target of 5.7 million children by 12%. After two successful rounds of treatment, the prevalence of STH dropped from 33% in 2012 to 6% in 2014 in 20 observed sub-counties.
More than 890,000 children were also treated for schistosomiasis, exceeding the national target of 600,000 children by 33%.
Deworming took place in nearly 16,000 schools in 28 counties that are endemic for parasitic worms, again exceeding the target of 11,000 schools. Further to this, 143 Sub-Counties successfully implemented deworming, out of 144 Sub-Counties planned for; 28,248 teachers were trained to administer deworming tablets to children, and 3,534 Sub-County and Ward personnel from the Health and Education ministries were trained in successfully implementing deworming.
This is great news, because school-based deworming is proven to be an effective intervention with tangible health, education, labour productivity and earnings benefits, and is one of the most cost-effective methods of increasing overall school attendance and participation.
The success of Evidence Action’s Deworm the World Initiative in achieving its goals was recognized by Ezra Klein from Vox Media, who donated to Deworm the World as part of the #icebucketchallenge….
EvidenceAction thanked him for his support by taking on the challenge themselves in Nairobi!
Overall, it's well worth celebrating the success of Evidence Action’s Deworm the World Initiative across Kenya, which surpassed its initial goals. It is also good to see the enthusiastic public support it has garnered!