Review of successful control of parasitic infections in Korea

Sung Tae Hong, Tai Soon Yong

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

Abstract

Korea had been one of hyperendemic countries of human parasitic infections until 1970s. In 1966, the Law for the Prevention of Parasitic Diseases was enacted, and the nationwide anti-parasitic control program began in 1969. The initiation of the national program was supported financially by Japan. The program included screening of whole students in Korea and treatment of all egg positive cases twice a year, and ended in 1995. In addition to student program, deworming campaign was run in the community, and 8 national status surveys were implemented from 1971 to 2012. Whole helminth egg positive rate was 84.3% in 1971 and decreased to 2.6% in 2012. Ascaris and other intestinal nematodes, Paragonimus, Taenia, and intestinal protozoa had decreased significantly throughout the country, but Clonorchis sinensis and intestinal trematodes are still prevalent locally in endemic areas. Lymphatic filariasis had been endemic in Jeju-do and other southern islands but elimination was endorsed in 2008. The control of parasitic infection in Korea was successful with statistical prevalence data, which can be a benchmarking model. In conclusion, the successful control in Korea could be achieved by social agreement of the priority, professional guidelines and systematic approach with good anthelminthics supply, and simultaneous economic growth.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)427-440
Number of pages14
JournalInfection and Chemotherapy
Volume52
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2020

Keywords

  • Elimination
  • Intestinal helminths
  • Korea
  • Lymphatic filariasis
  • National status

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