Carter celebrates program to end trachoma disease - CBS46 News

Carter celebrates program to end trachoma disease

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ATLANTA (AP) -

Former President Jimmy Carter and Pfizer Inc. are celebrating the 15th anniversary of an initiative focused on eliminating an infectious eye disease known to cause blindness in people living in developing nations.

Carter Center officials said Tuesday that the pharmaceutical company has provided hundreds of millions of doses of the antibiotic, Zithromax, through the International Trachoma Initiative. Carter Center officials say the focus of the initiative is to help eliminate blinding trachoma by 2020.

Officials say about 320 million people around the world are at risk of contracting trachoma, and about 7 million people have been blinded by the disease.

Carter Center officials say Pfizer is expected to distribute its 100 millionth dose of the antibiotic on Nov. 10 in the Amhara Region of Ethiopia.

Copyright 2013 Associated Press. All rights reserved.

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