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USAID's NTD Program
USAID's NTD Program

President Obama Affirms: "We Will Fight Neglected Tropical Disease"

July 11, 2009

  Photo of President Obama speaking before Ghana officials.
  President Barack Obama addresses the Ghanaian Parliament in Accra, Ghana.
Source: Chuck Kennedy/White House

In a speech delivered in Accra, Ghana, President Obama laid out his vision for human rights and democracy in Africa and reiterated his Administration’s pledge of $63 billion for a new Global Health Initiative, which includes support for the fight against neglected tropical diseases (NTDs). The President stated, "We will fight neglected tropical disease."

The President’s speech was welcome news to many individuals around the globe who have dedicated their careers to reducing the burden of NTDs.

Dr. Lorenzo Savioli, the director of Neglected Tropical Diseases at the World Health Organization stated, “President Obama's stance on neglected tropical diseases is perhaps the strongest political determination yet in favor of more than a billion people who suffer from disabilities caused by one or more of these diseases. We welcome with enthusiasm the President's commitment, particularly in Africa, where the fight against neglected tropical diseases is one of the best means to strengthen public health systems, serving the poor and the weakest."

Read or listen to the President's speech, "A New Moment of Promise."

View the World Health Organization's coverage, including Dr. Savioli's comments.