The World Health Organization, or WHO, says the COVID-19 pandemic has set back years of efforts to end neglected tropical diseases.
Neglected tropical diseases are a group of 20 diseases that affect 1.7 billion people, mainly from poor communities in tropical areas. Forty percent of the people affected are in Africa.
These diseases are both life-threatening and physically damaging. The WHO reports great progress has been made in the treatment of these diseases over the past 10 years. It says 42 countries around the world no longer have cases of at least one disease.