Summary of 37th Stop TB Partnership Board Meeting


26 February, Geneva, Switzerland - At the invitation of the Government of Brazil, the 37th Stop TB Partnership Board held its 37th meeting in  Brasilia, Brazil. The strategic forum, co-hosted locally by the Ministry of Health of Brazil and G20 Health Working Group (HWG), kicked off with a moving video from Brazilian professional football star Thiago da Silva who shared his TB story and called for increased attention and funding to end TB. An inspirational keynote from World Health Organization Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus set the tone for the three-day event.

The strategic forum attracted pre-eminent attendees including Minister of Health Budi Gunadi Sadikin of Indonesia, Minister of Health and Social Welfare Muhammad Ali Pate of Nigeria and Minister of Health Teodoro Herbosa of the Philippines, Commissioner for Health, Humanitarian Affairs and Social Development Minata Samate Cessouma of the African Union, and Minister of Health and Family Welfare of India and current Stop TB Board Chair Mansukh Mandaviya, who attended virtually.

Brazilian Secretary of Health Surveillance and Environment Ethel Maciel, Vice Minister of Health and Sport Max Francisco EnrÍquez Nava of Bolivia, Vice Minister of Health and Social Development Jesús Miguel Osteicochea of Venezuela, other parliamentarians from Latin America, representatives from Brazil’s vibrant civil society and research institutions, and Pan American Health Organization Director Jarbas Barbosa proudly utilized the event to celebrate the gains made in the regional TB response and to champion Brazil’s newly launched National Plan for the Elimination of Socially Determined Disease.

The Board also welcomed several new members representing the newly created TB Key and Vulnerable Populations and Innovation constituencies. These two constituencies completed the Board’s rapid transformation of its governing body to now include countries and people affected by TB as at least 50% of its membership.  Board members and guests including senior representatives of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, financing partners, the private sector, civil society, and TB-affected communities engaged in vigorous and productive discussions that concluded with the unanimous adoption of a comprehensive collection of decision points outlining an ambitious and informed vision and renewed confidence that TB can be ended by 2030.

Highlights from key presentations

1. United Nations High-Level Meeting on TB

The introductory presentation to the Board showcased the commitment of the Board members, guests, and countless others who diligently worked together to ensure a successful and engaging 2023 UNHLM on TB including a detailed Political Declaration on TB with concrete targets. The presenters urged the senior members of governments present to operationalize the treatment targets tailored to their countries, ensure adequate financing, regularly monitor progress, discuss, analyze and course correct as needed at least once annually.   

2. Innovators

The innovation presentations showcased the pioneering and impactful work of Stop TB’s grantees around the world. Sadly, it was not all good news as the presenters also noted the seismic gap in funding for TB Reach. Though donors have increased funding for the initiative in recent years, the available financing has not kept pace with demand.

3. TB Vaccine Development 

With an eye on the present exciting advances in TB vaccine development, this presentation also looked to the future with the upcoming 7th Global Forum on TB Vaccines.  News that there are16 vaccine candidates in the clinical development pipeline, five of which are currently in Phase 3 clinical trials were met with joy and optimism filled the room with the revelation that the Stop TB Partnership’s Working Group on New TB Vaccines, Stop TB partner IAVI, the Ministry of Health of Brazil and the Brazilian TB Research Network (REDE-TB) will co-host the global vaccine event in Brazil, a critically-timed opportunity to increase advocacy and financing of TB vaccines.


4. Global Drug Facility

It was a banner year for GDF and the presentation reflected the dedication of GDF and its partners to reduce prices for many key TB medicines and diagnostics globally resulting in savings of more than USD 32 million for GDF clients in 2023 alone. The presenter also noted the ongoing procurement shift from donor to domestic financing as an overall positive but flagged for the Board the challenges that some countries face with securing TB products through domestic processes. These challenges could lead to risky situations that could lead to stockouts and treatment interruptions.

5. The Global Fund

Highs and lows were the hallmarks of this presentation. Impressive anecdotes from countries underscored the demonstrated ambition levels of countries through their updated national strategic plans to end TB and their ambitious funding requests to the Global Fund were disappointingly accompanied by the news that USD 1.2 billion of country TB funding requests to Grant Cycle 7 remains unfunded, including essential commodities, especially rapid molecular diagnostics.

The bright spot of commending the collaborative efforts of Stop TB, the United States Agency for International Development, and the Global Fund in engaging rapid molecular diagnostics manufacturers to achieve reduced pricing as well as increased commitments to expand access to comprehensive global service and maintenance standards was accompanied by the recognition that grossly insufficient TB budget allocations have resulted in national TB programs limiting the deployment of molecular diagnostic instruments and/or adopting restrictive algorithms for their use.

The presenters closed by noting that the Global Fund was in the process of developing the investment case for its 8th Replenishment and conducting a review of its resource allocation approach to its disease portfolio including TB.

6. Community-Led Monitoring

The presentations to the Board concluded with a dynamic presentation from Stop TB’s OneImpact, a community-led monitoring platform.  The Board was treated to an impressive array of presenters testifying to the impact of the platform in their communities. OneImpact, implemented through Stop TB’s Challenge Facility for Civil Society is now in use in more than 36 countries by more than 95,000 people affected by TB. Presenters encouraged country representatives attending the Board meeting to incorporate CLM and use the OneImpact data in the development of National Strategic Plans, programming, monitoring and evaluation, and accountability efforts.

In addition, before the formal commencement of the Board meeting, the Stop TB Partnership Brazil led a two-day event focused solely on civil society and community partners that culminated with an evening that included 2 panel discussions Stop TB Partnership Community Award, and the launch of Valentine's Day Campaign. 

As the meeting drew to a close, Board Vice Chair Austin Obiefuna welcomed the invitation from Minister Pate to host the Board’s 38th meeting in Obiefuna’s home country of Nigeria in December 2024. Adjourning the meeting, Obiefuna thanked the Government of Brazil for their hospitality and reminded the participants of their vital roles, to celebrate how far they had come, and to not give up, “We are living in a time of unprecedented access to TB diagnosis and treatment, resulting in the highest ever numbers of people put on TB treatment and the lowest numbers of people missing from TB care. This will have a substantial impact on reducing transmission of TB and help high-burden countries to end TB within the next few years.

Yes! We can end TB.”