I was doing a Google search for something a couple days ago when I came across some information that pissed me off to no end, and sadly came as no great surprise. In Europe there are still a number of countries that continue to give their troops mefloquine as the drug of choice for malaria prophylaxis.
Based on what I read I decided it would be a good idea to add two more Facebook pages to the International mefloquine/tafenoquine Advocates Network, in Croatian and Hungarian. This will now bring the total number of languages to ten including English (again, thanks Google translate, I couldn’t have done it without you).
It’s time comsuming and tedious but it must be done. I’m hoping to find someone to help out with this task, so if you are familiar with and proficient in WordPress and would like to lend me a hand I would really like to hear from you.
Doing the translating is the easy part though. The hard part will be in reaching the target audiences for them. This is where I am going to ask for your help.
Who I’m looking for
People who have had their lives affected in some way by quinoline toxicity whether as a patient, caregiver, family, or advocate. You must have good knowledge of the disease and the issues surrounding it.
Military veterans, regardless of whether or not quinism is a factor in your life. Your knowledge could help us reach other veterans, so that they get this important information. It could save lives.
To be the most effective, we will need people with a good situational awareness of the political and social issues in your country. You will be knowledgeable about who the key players and organizations in your country are and be able to track down contact information.
Essentially we need “point people” in every country who can be conduits of information, both incoming and outgoing. You will play a crucial role in ensuring that people in your countries receive information that will save their lives, and in giving a voice to those who up until now have had none.
Where help is needed most.
Most countries in Europe are in dire need of advocacy efforts, as there appear to be few if any. Many European militaries continue to give their troops mefloquine as the anti-malarial drug of choice.
After spending some time looking into the situation in Italy, I became quite alarmed. Italian troops have been given mefloquine for decades and it is still in use. There have been numerous reports in recent years at the increasing numbers of veterans committing suicide, and the number of vets being diagnosed with PTSD has exploded.
Given what we already know, it is critical that advocacy efforts begin as soon as possible. Awareness and education activities must be initiated as widely as possible, in an effort to stem the tide of tragedy that has swept over the Italian military and its veterans.
The following countries are also in need of advocates urgenly as there are currently none that are known:
Elsewhere around the world.
Advocacy efforts in Canada, the United States, Australia, and Ireland are leading the world, but they still could use some help.
There is no such thing as too much advocacy or education, because there is no such thing as saving too many lives.
No matter where in the world you are, you can make a difference.