As reported in the Financial Times, six Big Pharma companies and several world goverments have pledged $150 M to fund a fight against 17 neglected diseases. These include leprosy, lymphatic filariasis, and sleeping sickness which afflict more than 1 B people worldwide - often in the poorest of countries. The funding plan and disease fighting effort was announced last Thursday by the World Health Organization (WHO). WHO maintains that several of the 17 target diseases could be eliminated by 2020 simply by distributing existing medications more effectively.
Margaret Chan, head of the UN agency, said “If [preventitive chemotherapy with cocktails of cheap drugs] implemented widely, they can substantially reduce the disease burden, breaking a cycle of infection, disability and lost opportunities that keep people in poverty.”
Posted by Bruce Lehr Ocotber 17th 2010.