An interview with Dr Sheila West - what 30 years in the field of trachoma can teach us

“From the very beginning there was a recognition that you needed a multipronged strategy for trachoma.” Dr Sheila West, Dana Center for Preventive Ophthalmology, Johns Hopkins University, speaking at the NNN meeting in Washington DC.

West has been working in the field of trachoma for 30 years, carrying out research on various aspects of the SAFE strategy in countries such as Tanzania, Niger and Ethiopia.

She says the recruitment of partners, in-particular funding partners, has enabled massive scale-up and programmatic reach into countries that might otherwise have been overlooked.

“The enormous contribution that Pfizer has made to donation programmes, the scale-up of the number of people treated – and now to watch the countries that are scaling down, applying for elimination status. Enormously gratifying.”