Guinea Worm Eradication Program ( Nigep )

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Guinea worm has long been documented in Nigeria, yet despite the long term presence, there had been little effort to quantify the burden or to prevent the disease until the inception of the Nigerian Guinea Worm Eradication Program (NIGEP).6 NIGEP was developed with the goal of eliminating guinea worm cases in Nigeria. However, this program also aimed to better understand the full burden and distribution of the disease in Nigeria and to define a framework to begin to initiate prevention measures for the disease.6
The announcement of the inception of NIGEP in 1988 was quite bold due to the lack of data on the burden of guinea worm nationally and the lack of effort previously taken to prevent the disease in Nigeria. What might explain a seemingly rash decision by the Ministry of Health, is that a UNICEF sponsored study was released in 1987 documenting the high endemicity of guinea worm in Nigeria and the loss of agricultural productivity that the country was facing.3 Following this document, a Nigerian newspaper published a cover story on guinea worm and the need for eradication in the country.3 From there on the Nigerian mass media seemed to incorporate guinea worm into all modes of the media.3 Finally, the major push for the NIGEP occurred in 1989 when former United States President Jimmy Carter travelled to Nigeria to meet the military president of the country and the Sultan of Sokoto at an international conference in which the President of Nigeria, Ibrahim Babangida,

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