Mortality and disability-adjusted life-years (dalys) for common neglected tropical diseases in Ethiopia, 1990-2015: Evidence from the global burden of disease study 2015

Amare Deribew, Biruck Kebede, Gizachew Assefa Tessema, Yohannes Adama Melaku, Awoke Misganaw, Teshome Gebre, Asrat Hailu, Sibhatu Biadgilign, Alemayehu Amberbir, Biruck Desalegn Yirsaw, Amanuel Alemu Abajobir, Oumer Shafi, Semaw F Abera, Nebiyu Negussu, Belete Mengistu, Azmeraw T. Amare, Abate Mulugeta, Birhan Mengistu, Zerihun Kebede, Mesfin SileshiMossie Tamiru, Elizabeth Chromwel, Scott D. Glenn, Jeffrey Stanaway, Kebede Deribe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


Introduction: Neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) are important public health problems in Ethiopia. In 2013, the Federal Ministry of Health (FMOH) has launched a national NTD master plan to eliminate major NTDs of public health importance by 2020. Benchmarking the current status of NTDs in the country is important to monitor and evaluate the progress in the implementation of interventions and their impacts. Therefore, this study aims to assess the trends of mortality and Disability-adjusted Life-Years (DALY) for the priority NTDs over the last 25 years.

Methods: We used the Global Burden of Disease (GBD) 2015 estimates for this study. The GBD 2015 data source for cause of death and DALY estimation included verbal autopsy (VA), Demographic and Health Surveys (DHS), and other disease specific surveys, Ministry of Health reports submitted to United Nations (UN) agencies and published scientific articles. Cause of Death Ensemble modeling (CODEm) and/or natural history models were used to estimate NTDs mortality rates. DALY were estimated as the sum of Years of Life Lost (YLL) due to premature mortality and Years Lived with Disability (YLD).

Results: All NTDs caused an estimated of 6,293 deaths (95% uncertainty interval (UI): 3699-10,080) in 1990 and 3,593 deaths (95% UI: 2051 - 6178) in 2015, a 43% reduction over the 25 years. Age-standardized mortality rates due to schistosomiasis, STH and leshmaniasis have declined by 91.3%, 73.5% and 21.6% respectively between 1990 to 2015. The number of DALYs due to all NTDs has declined from 814.4 thousand (95% UI: 548 thousand-1.2million) in 1990 to 579.5 thousand (95%UI: 309.4 thousand-1.3 million) in 2015. Age-standardized DALY rates due to all NTDs declined by 30.7%, from 17.6 per 1000(95%UI: 12.5-26.5) in 1990to 12.2 per 1000(95%UI: 6.5 - 27.4) in 2015. Age-standardized DALY rate for trachoma declined from 92.7 per 100,000(95% UI: 63.2 - 128.4) in 1990 to 41.2 per 100,000(95%UI: 27.4-59.2) in 2015, a 55.6% reduction between 1990 and 2015. Age-standardized DALY rates for onchocerciasis, schistosomiasis and lymphiaticfilariasis decreased by 66.2%, 29.4% and 12.5% respectively between 1990 and 2015. DALY rate for ascariasis fell by 56.8% over the past 25 years.

Conclusions: Ethiopia has made a remarkable progress in reducing the DALY rates for most of the NTDs over the last 25 years. The rapid scale of interventions and broader system strengthening may have a lasting impact on achieving the 2020 goal of elimination of most of NTDs. Ethiopia should strengthen the coverage of integrated interventions of NTD through proper coordination with other health programs and sectors and community participation to eliminate NTDs by 2020.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3-14
Number of pages12
JournalEthiopian Medical Journal
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • DALY
  • Ethiopia
  • NTDs


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