Policy & Global Development

Oriol Mitjà: “We are Very Happy with the Public’s Reaction after Watching the Documentary on Yaws Disease”

"Where the Roads End" was premiered on TV3 with a large audience and countless expressions of support

09.06.2016

More than 420,000 TV spectators watched the premier of the documentary Where the Roads End” in the Sense Ficció Program broadcast by TV3 on Tuesday, June 7. It was the evening’s second most viewed emission in Catalonia, something unheard of for a tropical neglected disease. The documentary can already be viewed online on TV3 a la carta (in Catalan) and will soon be transmitted by TVE in Spanish.

Many messages of support for the work of Dr. Mitjà, researcher at ISGlobal, were also posted on the social networks and the #MalaltiaPianTv3 hashtag was a trending topic in Twitter.  This Storify summary (at the end of the text) illustrates some reactions to the TV3 emission and the documentary preview that took place in the Caixa Forum of Barcelona in the presence of Oriol Mitjà and Noemí Cuní, the documentary director from the Broadcaster Company. The message sent by 10 and 11 year-old school children from Benicarló (Castellón) to Oriol Mitjá is one touching example of such reactions.

“We are very happy with the public’s reaction when watching the documentary” explains Mitjà from Lihir Island in Papua New Guinea. “If this warm and generous response continues, we are convinced that we will achieve our goal of eradicating yaws by 2020.”

After three years of intense work, Dr. Mitjà showed for the first time that an antibiotic commonly used in Western countries is effective against this tropical skin disease. Building on this discovery, the World Health Organization (WHO) has launched a plan to fight against the disease that affects more than 40 million people worldwide. If it works, yaws will become the second disease to be eradicated from the planet, after smallpox.

After three years of intense work, Dr. Mitjà showed for the first time that an antibiotic commonly used in Western countries is effective against this tropical skin disease. Building on this discovery, the World Health Organization (WHO) has launched a plan to fight against the disease that affects more than 40 million people worldwide. If it works, yaws will become the second disease to be eradicated from the planet, after smallpox.

For further information and to collaborate with the project, go to pian.isglobal.org.