WHO congratulates Sri Lanka on eliminating mother to child transmission of HIV, congenital syphilis

Source: Xinhua| 2019-12-11 15:58:16|Editor: xuxin
Video PlayerClose

COLOMBO, Dec. 11 (Xinhua) -- The World Health Organization (WHO) has congratulated Sri Lanka for achieving elimination of mother-to-child transmission of HIV and congenital syphilis, local media reports said here Wednesday quoting a statement from the WHO.

"Sri Lanka's achievement once again demonstrates the country's commitment to public health and builds on the strong foundation of primary health care services that it laid several decades ago," local media Daily FT reported, quoting WHO South-East Asia Regional Director Dr. Poonam Khetrapal Singh, located in Sri Lanka, as saying in a statement.

Sri Lanka has not reported any case of mother-to-child transmission of HIV since 2017 and its congenital syphilis cases has consistently been two per 100,000 live births, much less than 50 per 100,000 live births needed for elimination certification, as per the findings of the Global Validation Advisory Committee.

Validated for elimination of mother-to-child transmission of HIV and congenital syphilis in November 2019, Sri Lanka is the third country in WHO South-East Asia Region to achieve this after Thailand and Maldives.

"I would like to particularly commend the health workers for their persistent efforts which have hugely contributed to Sri Lanka achieving EMTCT," the regional director said.

Elimination of mother-to-child transmission (EMTCT), is the latest in the series of public health achievements by Sri Lanka which includes its victory over polio, elimination of maternal and neonatal tetanus, malaria elimination, measles elimination and rubella control, and elimination of lymphatic filariasis.

The country also leads in novel initiatives for addressing non-communicable diseases and promoting mental health, the WHO said.