African Programme for Onchocerciasis Control (APOC)

The purpose of this project is to establish, by 2014, a system capable of eliminating onchocerciasis (river blindness) as a public health problem in all African countries. It aims to create a system which could be used as a basis for introducing other health interventions.

Elimination of Onchocerciasis from Africa

For centuries, river blindness (onchocerciasis) plagued remote communities in Africa. The Programme was set up in 1995 to expand and build on the successes of the Onchocerciasis Control Programme in West Africa (OCP). The goal of the African Programme for Onchocerciasis Control (APOC) is to eliminate onchocerciasis as a disease of public health importance in Africa.

At the heart of APOC’s strategy to eliminate onchocerciasis is community-directed treatment with ivermectin (CDTI). This approach relies on active community participation to distribute ivermectin treatment. Communities plan their own distribution systems and make decisions about how and when the ivermectin is distributed. They decide which members of the community will be trained to deliver the treatment, and they also monitor the CDTI process.

At the end of 2012, more than 100.8 million (76.4%) people living in 24 African APOC country members received ivermectin treatment, of the 131 939 719 at-risk population to onchocerciasis in poor rural communities.


  • Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA)

    Funding Agencies
    Staff size: 501-1000

    CIDA was established in 1968 to administer the bulk of Canada's official development assistance (ODA) program. The measure of its success lies in its contribution to the achievement of the...

  • Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA - The Netherlands)

    Funding Agencies
    Netherlands | Staff size: Unknown

    The Ministry of Foreign Affairs promotes the interests of the Kingdom abroad. The Ministry coordinates and carries out Dutch foreign policy at its headquarters in The Hague and through its...

  • Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ)

    Service Providers, Funding Agencies, Development Consulting
    Germany | Staff size: 10,000+

    Working together for change

    As a service provider in the field of international cooperation for sustainable development and international education work, they are dedicated to shaping a...

  • Merck

    Service Providers, Goods Supplier
    United States | Staff size: 10,000+

    Merck is an innovative, global healthcare leader that is committed to improving health and well-being around the world. At Merck, they're applying their global reach, financial strength and...

  • Department for International Development (DFID)

    Funding Agencies
    United Kingdom | Staff size: 1001-5000

    The Department for International Development (DFID) leads the UK’s work to end extreme poverty. DFID is tackling the global challenges of time including poverty and disease, mass...

  • United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)

    Funding Agencies
    United States | Staff size: 5001-10,000

    UNDP is the UN's global development network, an organization advocating for change and connecting countries to knowledge, experience and resources to help people build a better life. They are on...

  • World Health Organization (WHO)

    Funding Agencies
    Staff size: 5001-10,000

    WHO (World Health Organisation) is the directing and coordinating authority for health within the United Nations system. It is responsible for providing leadership on global health matters,...

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Key Information

LocationWest Africa, Uganda, Togo, Tanzania, Southern Sudan, Sierra Leone, Senegal, Nigeria, Mali, Malawi, Liberia, Guinea-Bissau, Guinea, Ghana, Ethiopia, Equatorial Guinea, Congo, The Democratic Republic of, Chad, Central African Republic, Cameroon, Burundi, Burkina Faso, Benin, Angola, Southern Africa, Eastern Africa, Central Africa
  • Start Date 1995
  • End Date 2014
  • ValueUSD 236 Million