In 2006, following direct advocacy and published rationale, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) established a neglected tropical disease (NTD) program to support the scale-up of integrated platforms targeting the elimination and control of five NTDs-lymphatic filariasis, trachoma, onchocerciasis, schistosomiasis and soil-transmitted helminthiasis. By 2017, a cumulative total of over 2.3 billion NTD treatments had been delivered to at-risk populations in 25 countries, leveraging $19 billion in donated drugs - approximately $26 dollars in donated medicine per $1 spent by USAID. As a result, most of the supported countries are on track to achieve their elimination goals (for lymphatic filariasis and trachoma) by 2020 or 2021 and their control goals soon thereafter. Though 'small' when compared to other global health initiatives, this investment proved to be catalytic-and indeed highlights how foreign assistance funding can be transformative-for reducing the burden of major global health conditions such as NTDs.
The elimination of neglected tropical diseases (NTDs)
A case study exemplifying how foreign assistance funding can be catalytic in reducing the burden of major global health conditions
Wainwright, E., Evans, D., Rotondo, L., Pou, B., Yevstigneyeva, V., Zoerhoff, K. L., ... Reithinger, R. (2019). The elimination of neglected tropical diseases (NTDs): A case study exemplifying how foreign assistance funding can be catalytic in reducing the burden of major global health conditions. Clinical Infectious Diseases. https://doi.org/10.1093/cid/ciz742