Via Think Africa Press, a long but concise discussion: Uganda: Is Enough Being Done to Combat Nodding Disease? Excerpt:
The disease has effectively paralysed the communities it affects. Parents are unable to work because nodding patients require constant attention. Families affected by the disease are ostracised from their communities since no-one knows whether the disease is infectious.
“These communities are so demoralised,” Patrick Okot, the local chairman of Abim, told Think Africa Press. "People live with the fear that every decision they make – the food they eat, where they get their water – introduces the potential for infection. This small town in Lamwo District has been badly affected by nodding disease, with an estimated 300 cases in the village and surrounding areas. The nearest health centre is nearly 50 km away. “This disease, which is not yet known, is giving us a lot of setbacks”, says Okot.
Okot believes that government health officials have not done enough to allay these fears.
In his State of the Nation address earlier this month, Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni discussed a newly launched government health effort. In an apparently unscripted moment during his speech, Museveni touted the plan as the best option the government has for preventing the further spread of nodding disease: “Why don’t we then eliminate river blindness so that if nodding disease continues, we will know it is something else?” he asked.
Since the government’s river blindness eradication campaign started, however, there has been increasing discussion in his village about whether black flies may be the cause of nodding disease, but no-one is fully convinced one way or the other.