Neglected tropical diseases: Funding the next stage of the fight
The recent NTDs Summit in Geneva, Switzerland, highlighted the massive strides that have been made against neglected tropical diseases over the past five years with relatively small sums of money. Sixty percent of those in need have now been treated for at least one NTD — a group of 18 potentially debilitating poverty-related infectious diseases — with some, including lymphatic filariasis and Guinea worm disease, appearing to move in the direction of elimination.
Foreign aid for NTDs amounted to about $200 million to $300 million a year between 2012 and 2014, according to a report from the World Health Organization. “A relatively small amount of financing is needed to have big impact on NTDs,” Christopher Fitzpatrick, a health economist for the WHO, said at the summit.
Yet delegates also highlighted that while NTDs are considered one of the best buys in public health, they continue to be underfunded, and remain largely dependent on donors.
- Health Care