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Tuesday, 16 May, 2000, 13:44 GMT 14:44 UK
Microsoft helps guinea worm eradication

The chairman of Microsoft Corporation has donated twenty-eight-and-a-half-million dollars to the campaign to speed up eradication of the guinea-worm disease in Sub-Saharan Africa.

Part of the money from the Bill Gates Foundation will go to health education while the rest will be spent on building wells and treating drinking-water.

The disease is caused by infection from contaminated drinking water and though not curable, is preventable.

The donation is expected to ensure eradication of guinea worm by 2005 making it the second disease after smallpox to be globally eliminated. The grant will be divided between the World Health Organisation, the UN children's fund and the Carter Centre.

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