baby healthcare africa BSIP/Getty Images

Alistar a las mujeres en la lucha sanitaria de África

BRAZZAVILLE – Las Enfermedades Tropicales Desatendidas (ETD) afectan desproporcionadamente a las mujeres y niñas. Por sí sola, la esquistosomiasis genital femenina (EGF) causa dolor intenso, sangrado y lesiones en más de 16 millones de mujeres y niñas en el África subsahariana.

Más allá de causar un sufrimiento físico generalizado, las ETD tienen un gran impacto socioeconómico de largo plazo en millones de mujeres y niñas. A menudo, las mujeres que han quedado marcadas o desfiguradas a consecuencia de enfermedades como la EGF y la filariasis linfática reciben un estigma al punto de ser incapaces de casarse o quedar abandonadas por sus cónyuges. Y aunque la desfiguración y el estigma social no son letales, pueden causar o exacerbar trastornos psicológicos y limitar las oportunidades a su disposición.

Desde el año 2000, se han donado suficientes productos farmacéuticos para cinco mil millones de tratamientos preventivos contra las ETD. Y muchas personas ahora reconocen que su control, y eventualmente su eliminación, serán esenciales para lograr los Objetivos de Desarrollo Sostenible para áreas tan diversas como la nutrición, la educación, la salud, el agua, el saneamiento y la higiene y el crecimiento económico. Debido a que los ODS se basan en el principio de "no dejar a nadie atrás", no pueden considerarse un éxito hasta que se hayan cumplido en todas partes y para todas las personas, incluidas las mujeres y las niñas.

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