Cover picture

The cover of the third progress report on Uniting to Combat Neglected Tropical Diseases.

The Third Progress Report of the London Declaration on Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs) “Country Leadership and Collaboration on Neglected Tropical Diseases,” released June 25, 2015, notes that significant global progress has been made in raising the visibility of NTDs and in introducing and expanding national NTD programs. The report also acknowledges the unprecedented and ongoing commitment by the pharmaceutical sector to provide the drugs needed for combating NTDs around the world.

As we look ahead to the next 5 years and the deadline for reaching the 2020 NTD goals, it is clear that we must accelerate our efforts to reach the targets set forth by the World Health Organization [PDF, 1.2MB] in 2012. While we have achieved many wins along the way, the current rate of progress is not sufficient to reach our targets. In particular, there is an urgent need to fill the financial and human resource gap required to distribute available, donated drugs.

Bridging this gap will require an expanded partnership that maximizes existing and new donor resources and increases domestic financing. In December 2014, several African governments signed on to The Addis Ababa NTD Commitment [PDF, 123KB], which is an encouraging demonstration of growing political and financial support in the region.

Blending resources can help advance complementary goals across an integrated national NTD program. Donor support can energize and expand the reach of national programs to help achieve elimination goals. In tandem, countries themselves can commit to increasing their domestic financing to support control programs and strengthen their national NTD programs.