WASHINGTON, D.C. — July 15, 2014 — The Global Network for Neglected Tropical Diseases (Global Network) today released a report, “Ending Neglected Tropical Diseases: Opportunities to Support the Control and Elimination of NTDs” that offers an analysis of the progress made, challenges remaining and new opportunities in the global effort to control and eliminate neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) by 2020.

This report stems from the Global Network’s Development Agency Roundtable held in Berlin, Germany last year, hosted together with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the World Bank Group. Participants included government officials, pharmaceutical and academic representatives, and NGO partners, gathering from around the world with a special focus on expanding NTD cross-sector integration and identifying new financing channels that could help close the U.S. $220 million annual funding gap. Notably, Dr. Luis Sambo, regional director of the World Health Organization (WHO) Regional Office for Africa, delivered a powerful message on the importance of African governments and development partners to expand their investments in NTD control and elimination.

“All sectors have a unique role to play in defeating NTDs. The Development Agency Roundtable positively indicated that the different development partners are committed to working together to sustainably improve the health of the most vulnerable populations,” said Dr. Neeraj Mistry, managing director of the Global Network. “Even with the exciting progress made over the past two years since the landmark London Declaration on NTDs, we must scale up efforts and take new, bold actions against NTDs.”

The report calls for countries worldwide to:

  • Recognize the impact of NTDs as a key underlying constraint to global economic growth, poverty and inequality reduction, educational achievement and nutrition.
  • Institutionalize NTD control and elimination efforts in foreign policy, development and poverty reduction agendas.
  • Invest in and prioritize nationally-led integrated NTD plans by providing political support, reliable long-term financing and technical assistance.
  • Promote the fight against NTDs in international and regional forums and support the inclusion of NTD-specific goals and targets in the post-2015 development agenda.

Since the Development Agency Roundtable, a number of noteworthy developments have occurred:

  • In January 2014, the U.S. increased its NTD funding to $100 million for fiscal year (FY) 2014, representing the largest increase in U.S. funding for NTDs since FY 2010.
  • In April 2014, original and new London Declaration partners met in Paris to assess progress and pledge an additional $240 million to NTDs; a new Uniting to Combat NTDs report captures this exciting momentum.
  • In April 2014, John Kufuor, President of the Republic of Ghana (2001-2009), joined partners from the U.S. government, NGO community and private sector to discuss opportunities to increase access to improved WASH and better integrate WASH and NTD programs.  
  • In June 2014, the UN’s Open Working Group on Sustainable Development Goals released its zero draft of the Proposed Goals and Targets on Sustainable Development for the Post-2015 Development Agenda, which explicitly includes NTDs alongside other communicable diseases targeted for elimination.

Click here for the full report.

About the Global Network for Neglected Tropical Diseases

The Global Network for Neglected Tropical Diseases is an advocacy initiative of the Sabin Vaccine Institute that works in partnership with international agencies, governments, academic institutions, corporations, non-governmental development organizations and the general public to raise the awareness, political will and funding necessary to control and eliminate the seven most common neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) by 2020. For more information, please visit www.globalnetwork.org.

About Sabin Vaccine Institute

Sabin Vaccine Institute is a non-profit, 501(c)(3) organization of scientists, researchers, and advocates dedicated to reducing needless human suffering caused by vaccine preventable and neglected tropical diseases. Sabin works with governments, leading public and private organizations, and academic institutions to provide solutions for some of the world's most pervasive health challenges. Since its founding in 1993 in honor of the oral polio vaccine developer, Dr. Albert B. Sabin, the Institute has been at the forefront of efforts to control, treat and eliminate these diseases by developing new vaccines, advocating use of existing vaccines and promoting increased access to affordable medical treatments. For more information please visit www.sabin.org.