The International Trachoma Initiative (ITI) was founded in 1998 in response to the World Health Organization’s (WHO) call to eliminate blinding trachoma by 2020 (GET2020). ITI’s founding partners, Pfizer and the Edna McConnell Clark Foundation, saw the need for an international nongovernmental organization dedicated solely to the elimination of blinding trachoma. To achieve that goal, ITI collaborates with governmental and nongovernmental agencies at the local, national and international levels to implement the WHO-recommended SAFE strategy for trachoma control (Surgery; Antibiotics—using donated Zithromax®; Facial cleanliness; and Environmental improvement).
Partnership with Pfizer
Since 1998, the collaboration between Pfizer and ITI has been strengthened by additional partnerships to distribute Zithromax® as a part of the “A” component of the SAFE strategy. Implementation of all components of the SAFE strategy relies on multiple partnerships in various sectors such as water, sanitation and education that are essential to achieving our shared goal of elimination. We look forward to scaling-up efforts and providing the necessary Zithromax® for the effort to eliminate blinding trachoma by 2020 in order to help preserve and restore the health and well-being of families worldwide. To date, Pfizer has donated 225 million Zithromax® treatments through ITI. This medicine has reached millions of people in 19 countries. ITI plans to be active in more than 42 countries by 2015.
ITI is a Program of The Task Force for Global Health
In April 2009, ITI joined forces with the Task Force for Global Health to leverage resources and significantly increase efforts to eliminate blinding trachoma. The Task Force and ITI are based in Decatur, Georgia, USA. ITI also has an office in Ethiopia.
The Task Force for Global Health is a not-for-profit, public health organization with a 27-year history of improving the lives of millions of people around the world. Working with a broad network of public and private sector partners, the Task Force manages an array of initiatives focused on neglected tropical diseases, immunization and vaccines, and health systems strengthening.
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