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Collaborative Effort Targets 17 Tropical Diseases for Control, Elimination

Collaborative Effort Targets 17 Tropical Diseases for Control, Elimination In an effort to control or eliminate 17 neglected tropical diseases, the World Health Organization (WHO) is bringing together national governments, more than a dozen pharmaceutical companies, and philanthropies such as the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in the largest coordinated effort to date to combat this group of illnesses. WHO estimates that neglected tropical diseases affect more than 1 billion people worldwide, mainly in poor rural areas. To guide the effort and set targets for what should be achieved by the end of the decade, WHO has published a new strategy, Accelerating Work to Overcome the Global Impact of Neglected Tropical Diseases: A Roadmap for Implementation (http://tinyurl.com/79ytbns). The project comes in response to WHO's 2010 report, Working to Overcome the Global Impact of Neglected Tropical Diseases, which called for new resources to overcome such diseases (http://tinyurl.com/7oxg2ah). The diseases that are being targeted include dengue, rabies, blinding trachoma, Buruli ulcer, endemic treponematoses (yaws), leprosy, Chagas disease, human African trypanosomiasis, visceral leishmaniasis, cysticercosis, dracunculiasis (guinea worm disease), echinococcosis, foodborne trematode infections, lymphatic filariasis, onchocerciasis, schistosomiasis, and soil-transmitted helminthiases (intestinal worms). “We have the tools, we know what to do, and this public-private partnership is unprecedented,” Margaret Chan, MD, WHO's director general, said at a London press conference held in January to announce the effort. “The do-good spirit is giving me a lot of optimism.” Focusing on treatments for these diseases is generally not profitable for drug companies. But those involved in the initiative announced that they would sustain or expand existing drug donation programs to meet demand through 2020, share expertise and compounds to accelerate the development of new drugs, and provide more than $785 million to support research efforts and strengthen drug distribution and implementation programs. Additional money will come from groups such as the UK Department for International Development and the US Agency for International Development. Also, various governments, including those where neglected tropical diseases are endemic (such as Bangladesh, Brazil, Mozambique, and Tanzania), announced that they would devote resources to combat these diseases. “The drug suppliers are willing to be generous, but they need to know there's a road map . . . they need to know that there's delivery funding . . . and they need to know that the countries involved are going to orchestrate their health systems to make sure that all of the drugs really get to those people in need,” Bill Gates, cochair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, said at the press conference. “And what's unique today is that all of those actors have stepped forward in a dramatic way.” The WHO roadmap recommends 5 strategies for the prevention, control, elimination, and eradication of neglected tropical diseases: preventive chemotherapy; intensified disease management; vector and intermediate host control; veterinary public health at the human-animal interface; and provision of safe water, sanitation, and hygiene. A scorecard will regularly and formally track participants' progress, including whether they are meeting their supply, research, funding, and implementation commitments to work toward the effort's goals. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png JAMA American Medical Association

Collaborative Effort Targets 17 Tropical Diseases for Control, Elimination

JAMA , Volume 307 (8) – Feb 22, 2012

Collaborative Effort Targets 17 Tropical Diseases for Control, Elimination

Abstract

In an effort to control or eliminate 17 neglected tropical diseases, the World Health Organization (WHO) is bringing together national governments, more than a dozen pharmaceutical companies, and philanthropies such as the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in the largest coordinated effort to date to combat this group of illnesses. WHO estimates that neglected tropical diseases affect more than 1 billion people worldwide, mainly in poor rural areas. To guide the effort and set targets for...
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Publisher
American Medical Association
Copyright
Copyright © 2012 American Medical Association. All Rights Reserved.
ISSN
0098-7484
eISSN
1538-3598
DOI
10.1001/jama.2012.201
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

In an effort to control or eliminate 17 neglected tropical diseases, the World Health Organization (WHO) is bringing together national governments, more than a dozen pharmaceutical companies, and philanthropies such as the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in the largest coordinated effort to date to combat this group of illnesses. WHO estimates that neglected tropical diseases affect more than 1 billion people worldwide, mainly in poor rural areas. To guide the effort and set targets for what should be achieved by the end of the decade, WHO has published a new strategy, Accelerating Work to Overcome the Global Impact of Neglected Tropical Diseases: A Roadmap for Implementation (http://tinyurl.com/79ytbns). The project comes in response to WHO's 2010 report, Working to Overcome the Global Impact of Neglected Tropical Diseases, which called for new resources to overcome such diseases (http://tinyurl.com/7oxg2ah). The diseases that are being targeted include dengue, rabies, blinding trachoma, Buruli ulcer, endemic treponematoses (yaws), leprosy, Chagas disease, human African trypanosomiasis, visceral leishmaniasis, cysticercosis, dracunculiasis (guinea worm disease), echinococcosis, foodborne trematode infections, lymphatic filariasis, onchocerciasis, schistosomiasis, and soil-transmitted helminthiases (intestinal worms). “We have the tools, we know what to do, and this public-private partnership is unprecedented,” Margaret Chan, MD, WHO's director general, said at a London press conference held in January to announce the effort. “The do-good spirit is giving me a lot of optimism.” Focusing on treatments for these diseases is generally not profitable for drug companies. But those involved in the initiative announced that they would sustain or expand existing drug donation programs to meet demand through 2020, share expertise and compounds to accelerate the development of new drugs, and provide more than $785 million to support research efforts and strengthen drug distribution and implementation programs. Additional money will come from groups such as the UK Department for International Development and the US Agency for International Development. Also, various governments, including those where neglected tropical diseases are endemic (such as Bangladesh, Brazil, Mozambique, and Tanzania), announced that they would devote resources to combat these diseases. “The drug suppliers are willing to be generous, but they need to know there's a road map . . . they need to know that there's delivery funding . . . and they need to know that the countries involved are going to orchestrate their health systems to make sure that all of the drugs really get to those people in need,” Bill Gates, cochair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, said at the press conference. “And what's unique today is that all of those actors have stepped forward in a dramatic way.” The WHO roadmap recommends 5 strategies for the prevention, control, elimination, and eradication of neglected tropical diseases: preventive chemotherapy; intensified disease management; vector and intermediate host control; veterinary public health at the human-animal interface; and provision of safe water, sanitation, and hygiene. A scorecard will regularly and formally track participants' progress, including whether they are meeting their supply, research, funding, and implementation commitments to work toward the effort's goals.

Journal

JAMAAmerican Medical Association

Published: Feb 22, 2012

Keywords: tropical disease

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