28 October, Geneva – World health leaders launched a call to action on financing tuberculosis (TB) today in Bali, Indonesia, where they met ahead of the G20 Summit to discuss strengthening global health architecture.
G20 members recognize that lack of adequate financing remains the top obstacle to ending the TB epidemic, and stress that global investments must increase fourfold by 2030 to meet the targets set for ending this preventable and treatable disease.
The call to action coincides with the recent launch of the World Health Organization’s 2022 Global TB Report, which laid bare the devastating consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic on global efforts to control TB.
The report showed an increase for the first time in many years in the number of people falling ill with TB and drug-resistant TB, along with a decline in 2021 in global spending on essential TB services.
At the same time, G20 members underscored the critical role Unitaid plays in the TB response as the world’s largest multilateral donor to TB research and development, striving for equitable access to life-saving diagnostics and treatment.
Unitaid has contributed to the global efforts by supporting research related to multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB) treatment, paediatric TB diagnosis, child-friendly formulations of TB and MDR-TB drugs, TB preventive therapy (the 3HP regimen), and digital adherence technologies. The agency is investing an additional US$ 30 million, aiming to increase TB detection and help to find the missing millions of cases.
Following discussions on strengthening the global health architecture and pandemic prevention, preparedness and response , G20 health ministers delivered six key actions for consideration during the G20 Leaders’ Summit in mid-November.
Unitaid, as a key player for equitable access to health innovation, remains committed to help build global health resilience and response capacity against future pandemic threats.
As co-leader of the ACT-Accelerator’s therapeutics pillar, Unitaid has contributed to substantial progress in the COVID-19 response, demonstrating its unique capability to transform markets and help countries and communities achieve an enabling environment for product adoption.
“Responding to the COVID-19 health crisis, Unitaid and partners have improved access to critical oxygen supplies and facilitated adoption of life-saving therapeutics alongside vital diagnostic tests. But this is not the end of it, much work remains to be done,” Unitaid Executive Director Dr Philippe Duneton said. “We must focus on building resilience at the market and country level in light of unpredictable and fast evolving scenarios. COVID-19 has shown us that reaching equitable global access to medical countermeasures requires a continuum between pandemic preparedness and response efforts.”
Access more information on the Call to Action on Financing for TB Response here.
Access the G20 Health Ministers Communiqué here.
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