Oct 3rd 2016

Eliminating Trachoma (FutureLearn)

Discover how communities and experts are joining together to end trachoma disease across 42 endemic countries by the year 2020. An estimated 200 million people are at risk of trachoma in 42 countries. Trachoma is a neglected tropical disease. It occurs in some of the poorest populations with limited access to clean water, sanitation, and healthcare, and is the world’s leading infectious cause of blindness. At present, we have a unique opportunity to eliminate this disease.

This course aims to inform and support the personnel implementing and managing trachoma programmes at a district and community level. Additionally, the course will provide insights from stakeholders, experts and professionals as they share successes and resolve challenges to achieve elimination of trachoma.

Understand trachoma as a disease

This course will teach you to evaluate the natural history, clinical signs, and grading of trachoma in individuals, and map the burden of disease at a community level.

Explore the epidemiology of trachoma

We will investigate and provide guidance on how epidemiological data informs the selection of interventions at local and national level, and how it informs decision making on the path to eradicating the disease.

Discover how trachoma elimination strategies are implemented

Appropriate interventions to eliminate trachoma are encapsulated by the acronym ‘SAFE’, which represents surgery, antibiotics, facial cleanliness, and environmental improvement. We will consider what it takes to deliver the SAFE strategy in trachoma-endemic regions with agreed best practices, and how to best monitor and evaluate these activities for improved effectiveness.

Throughout the course we will use a variety of learning tools and provide opportunities to interact and learn through online conversations with peers and educators from across the world. A wide range of experts will be taking part, including:

- Staff from the World Health Organization

- Academics from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine

- Stakeholders from NGOs

- Experts from water, sanitation and hygiene, and

- People active at the community level.