We need your help to end trachoma now | Orbis

We need your help to end trachoma now

Millions of people in Ethiopia are suffering from a highly contagious and potentially blinding infectious eye disease called trachoma – and the COVID-19 pandemic has made the situation even worse. Check out the photo gallery and read below to find out what's going on right now in Ethiopia and how you can help save people from going blind:

Treating Millions of People in Southern Ethiopia

Orbis has been fighting trachoma in Ethiopia for over 20 years and we’ve virtually eradicated the disease in 24 districts of the country. But the global pandemic temporarily halted our work and threatened to undo two decades of progress.

In December 2020, with special support and approval from the Ethiopian Ministry of Health, we launched a large-scale, door-to-door mass drug administration (MDA) program to restart the fight against trachoma in Ethiopia’s Southern Nations, Nationalities, and People's Region (SNNPR).

With the support of our amazing donors, we've already administered more than 7.5 million doses of trachoma-fighting antibiotics across 89 districts in just one month, despite significant challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. We’re making great progress, but there's still so much work to do.

The antibiotic we’re using is Zithromax, a well-known and safe medicine generously donated by pharmaceutical company and Orbis’s Global Partner, Pfizer.

But while the antibiotics may be donated, delivering the treatment to people's homes and keeping everyone safe from the spread of COVID takes twice as long and costs more — a lot more. And that’s why we need your support.

We CAN eliminate trachoma in our lifetime. It IS possible. We know how — and we are actively working at it — but we need your help to continue. Your donation will help keep this critical work going and allow us to target other regions in Ethiopia hardest hit by this devastating, but entirely preventable disease.

From the Field: the Latest News & Stories

Check out the latest one-the-ground news, stories and updates about our MDA program in southern Ethiopia, and Orbis's fight to eradicate trachoma. Follow our progress and see how your support is giving entire communities hope for a better and brighter future.

You Can Make a Difference in the Fight to End Trachoma

Just like COVID-19, trachoma is highly contagious and spreads quickly. And like COVID, trachoma must be stopped right now before it gets worse.

We’ve made so much progress towards eradicating this excruciatingly painful and blinding disease in Ethiopia. Over the past 22 years, Orbis has administered over 82 million doses of donated antibiotics, conducted more than 174,000 trichiasis surgeries, and established more than 320 primary eye care units.

But much of our hard work could be undone if we can’t continue to distribute Zithromax to those who need it most.

We have a plan, we have the medication, and we have a dedicated and selfless team of outreach workers and volunteers to distribute it. We’ve already treated more than 7.5 million people since December, but this is just the beginning.

Will you help to fight trachoma in Ethiopia today?

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