Kala Azar, or visceral leishmaniasis, is a neglected tropical disease.
Even when the disease isn’t at its rainy season peak, Leer hospital constantly has around 50 patients suffering from Kala-Azar to treat. Transmitted by sand files, Kala Azar weakens the immune system. And unless treated correctly, it proves fatal in almost 100% of cases. But even so, the disease has yet to be put in the spotlight and people travel long distances for treatment in South Sudan.
When the usual treatment fails or in cases with severely ill patients or pregnant women, MSF uses the drug AmBisome, which shows very positive results. But the cost of AmBisome is a significant barrier.
Some 1000 cases were treated by MSF in South Sudan in 2012.