This essay originally appeared in the August 2010 issue of Criminal Justice Ethics, which is published on behalf of John Jay College of Criminal Justice, The City University of New York. It came out of a workshop that was held in New York City in January 2010 entitled The Ethics of Intervention/Protection: Contending Approaches. The workshop was organized by the Center for International Human Rights (CIHR) and the Institute for Criminal Justice Ethics (ICJE).
Over 1 billion people are infected with one of the 14 diseases defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) as neglected tropical diseases (NTDs). These are the most common infections in the 2.7 billion people living on less than $2 a day and affects those often marginalized and forgotten by governments, left to suffer in silence. NTDs are diverse but all cause severe disability or death, and bring a major economic burden on endemic countries.