GlaxoSmithKline has announced that it will donate a further 400 million albendazole tablets a year to treat children in Africa at risk of intestinal worms.

The company already donates 600 albendazole tablets to the World Health Organisation (WHO) every year.

Intestinal worms aggravate malnutrition and increase rates of anaemia, and are the number one cause of ill health among school children, according to the WHO’s neglected tropical diseases report.

GlaxoSmithKline CEO Andrew Witty said that there was growing momentum within industry, government and other partners to supply both medicines and funds.

“Our activity in this area is widespread, with ongoing research in both prevention and treatment,” he added.

The WHO recommends an annual dose of the medicine to treat children aged one to 15 in areas where the worms are endemic.