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East Mediterr Health J. 2004 Nov;10(6):761-70.

Experiences in the prevention, control and elimination of iodine deficiency disorders: a regional perspective.

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Shaheed Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran.


Before 1987, iodine deficiency was not considered an issue of major importance in the countries of the Eastern Mediterranean Region (EMR). Progress began with a systematic national study of goitre and other iodine deficiency disorders (IDD) in the Islamic Republic of Iran in 1983. Following a major review of the prevalence of IDD in member states, Guidelines for national programmes for the control of iodine deficiency disorders in the EMR were published by the World Health Organization (WHO) in 1988. This paper discusses progress towards elimination of iodine deficiency by reviewing the status of IDD in the countries of EMR and programmes for prevention and control of IDD with particular reference to the Islamic Republic of Iran, the first country to be declared IDD-free by WHO.

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