07 February 2019 | Statements

Unitaid seeks innovative, long-lasting technologies to help tackle diseases

Geneva – Unitaid is pleased to announce a call for proposals for projects speeding development of long-acting versions of medicines that could potentially revolutionize treatment and prevention of diseases including HIV, tuberculosis and malaria in low- and middle-income countries.

Safe and effective daily oral medicines are available for the prevention and treatment of major diseases, but they are not always taken consistently, resulting in worse health outcomes, the spread of illness and the development of drug-resistant superbugs.

Long-acting treatments include slow-release injectables, implants, patches or rings that can last more than a month, and oral medicines that can last more than a week. Delivering medicines this way frees patients from complex, daily regimens with many pills, and could also improve access and address stigma.

Unitaid is soliciting proposals that:

• Reformulate critical standard-of-care medicines into long-acting products.

• Enable sound plans to commercialize these products, including a scale-up strategy to introduce them on a large scale.

• Focus on products that can be introduced in the market within three to five years.

Through calls for proposals, Unitaid finds smart new ideas to help alleviate the burden of diseases, and conducts pilots that, if successful, are scaled up by partner organizations such as the Global Fund. An independent review committee of global health experts helps Unitaid choose the best proposals to fund through a competitive selection process.

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