Global urbanization and the neglected tropical diseases

PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
(Accessed 25 February 2017)

Global urbanization and the neglected tropical diseases
Peter J. Hotez
| published 23 Feb 2017 P
Increasing urbanization in both developing and developed countries could promote the emergence of a new set of neglected tropical diseases (NTDs)
…Overall, there is a dearth of information about the urban transmission of NTDs and very few disease burden estimates that distinguish urban versus rural modes of transmission. As global urbanization continues to increase, there is going to be an urgent need for such studies. By 2050, with most of the global population living in cities, we will need to better understand how NTDs and other poverty-related neglected diseases flourish in urban environments.
The UN is beginning to shape new public policies for global urbanization, which include programs for balanced urban growth and spatial distribution, sustainability, and timely collection of data required for urban planning [1]. The findings of significant and serious NTDs in urban areas mean that these diseases will also need to be considered as urban areas and megacities strive to meet their SDGs. Arbovirus infections, leptospirosis, cholera, and typhoid fever, vector-borne parasitic infections such as schistosomiasis, Chagas disease, leishmaniasis, and vivax malaria, and NTD–NCD comorbidities each represent the product of urban planning breakdowns and unchecked growth. Without adequate public health measures and research and development for new drugs, diagnostics, and vaccines, we can expect that these diseases will continue to thwart sustainable urban growth in the coming decades.