Table of Contents
International Scholarly Research Notices
Volume 2014, Article ID 910937, 7 pages
Research Article

Yaws Prevalence, Lessons from the Field and the Way Forward towards Yaws Eradication in Ghana

1National Yaws Eradication Program, Disease Control and Prevention Department, Korle Bu, Accra, Ghana
2East Akyem Municipal Health Directorate, Ghana Health Service, Kibi, Ghana
3Policy, Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation Division, Ghana Health Service, Accra, Ghana
4Expanded Program on Immunization, Disease Control and Prevention Department, Korle Bu, Accra, Ghana
5Disease Control and Prevention Department, Ghana Health Service, Accra, Ghana
6National Yaws Eradication Program, Ghana
7Ghana Health Service Headquarters, Accra, Ghana
8WHO Headquarters, Geneva, Switzerland
9Public Health Division, Ghana Health Service, Accra, Ghana
10National Tuberculosis Control Program, Disease Control and Prevention Department, Korle Bu, Accra, Ghana

Received 7 July 2014; Revised 30 November 2014; Accepted 17 December 2014; Published 31 December 2014

Academic Editor: Drosos Karageorgopoulos

Copyright © 2014 Patrick Agana-Nsiire et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Despite past WHO/UNICEF led global yaws eradication efforts, the disease seems to persist. The true burden is however not known for comprehensive action. Ghana’s data showed significant increase in notified cases since the 1970s. Recognizing limitations in routine data, we carried out a yaws treatment survey in 2008 in three purposively selected districts to establish the prevalence and learn lessons for renewed action. Of 208,413 school children examined, 4,006 were suspected yaws cases (prevalence 1.92 (95% CI: 1.86–1.98) percent). Of 547 schools surveyed, 13% had prevalence between 5% and 10% while 3% had prevalence above 10%. The highest school prevalence was 19.5%. Half of the schools had cases. The large sample allowed aggregating the school results by administrative levels. The lowest aggregated prevalences of 0.23%, 0.40%, and 0.64% were in the urban sub-districts of Asamankese, Oda, and Achiase, respectively, while the highest of 8.61%, 3.69%, and 1.4% were in rural Akroso, Mepom, and Aperade, respectively. In conclusion, the prevalence of yaws is high in some schools in rural, hard-to-reach areas of Ghana. Considering past global eradication efforts, our findings suggest yaws may be resurging for which programmatic action is needed.