25 September, Geneva, Switzerland – The global fight to end Tuberculosis (TB) received a renewed boost and support to keep the devastating disease on top of the political agenda garnering the attention of world leaders through events and announcements in the lead-up to the United Nations High-Level Meeting on TB ( UN HLM on TB) which took place on 22 September in New York.
The Stop TB Partnership ensured that high-level TB side events were organized daily with support from partners and key stakeholders during the 78th session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) high-level week from 18-22 September.
With the UNGA week concluded and the new political Declaration on TB adopted by the member states, we bring you a summary of all the big announcements and commitments from last week.
Coalition of Leaders to End Tuberculosis
At the beginning of the week, the Stop TB Partnership officially launched its Coalition of Leaders to End Tuberculosis, a high-level advocacy campaign to lead efforts toward ending TB under the leadership of Heads of State and Government.
The Stop TB Partnership is proud to announce that the Presidents of Brazil, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Indonesia, Philippines, South Africa, and the United Republic of Tanzania are supporting this important initiative, and many more are expected to join in the near future.
To learn more about the event, read the news alert here. You can also watch the recording of the event on Stop TB Partnership’s YouTube channel.
Kochon Prize and Winners of the Challenge Facility for Civil Society grants
The UNGA week formed the perfect backdrop for the Stop TB Partnership to announce winners of the Kochon Prize 2022-2023.
The award, supported by the Kochon Foundation, is given annually by the Stop TB Partnership to remarkable individuals or organizations in recognition of their contributions to the fight to end TB. H.E Mrs Monica Chakwera, The First Lady of Malawi joined the Kochon Prize ceremony to recognize the exceptional contributions of organizations and individuals in Ukraine.
The award recognized the particular efforts of the National TB Program run by the Center of Public Health of the Ministry of Health of Ukraine, the Phthisiopulmonology Medical Center of Kherson oblast, and Dr. Zhanna Karpenko, a TB doctor and Medical Director from Chernihiv oblast for their steadfast contributions and commitments.
It is the largest award specifically devoted to tuberculosis. This year’s award was won by the Ukrainian healthcare workers for their hard work in fighting tuberculosis despite the ongoing war.
Mrs. Michele Sumilas, Assistant to the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Administrator, Bureau for Policy, Planning, and Learning and Her Excellency Mrs. Anne-Claire Amprou, Global Health Ambassador, Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs, France joined Dr Lucica Ditiu in announcing the 114 newly selected grantees under Round 12 of the Challenge Facility for Civil Society (CFCS).
The CFCS is Stop TB Partnership’s flagship program supporting TB-affected communities and civil society grassroots organizations to mobilize and advance a movement to end TB. With US$ 13.5 million available in funding, Round 12 will be the largest-ever investment dedicated to TB civil society and TB-affected community organizations. To learn more about the event, read the news alert here. You can also watch the recording of the event on Stop TB Partnership’s YouTube channel.
Canada announces CAD$25.5 Million investment for Stop TB Partnership’s TB REACH
Stop TB Partnership is thrilled to announce that Canada will continue to support TB REACH with an additional CAD 25.5 million contribution. Prime Minister Trudeau announced TB REACH funding as a package of investments at the United Nations General Assembly in New York. TB REACH is a flagship initiative of Stop TB Partnership that provides direct funding to partners in high TB burden countries to deliver care to people with TB using innovative approaches. Since 2010, TB REACH has provided more than USD 160 million to 56 countries through more than 350 grants.
USAID announces US$23 million in funding and new efforts to support TB response
The US government through USAID announced more than $23 million in funding, as well as new efforts to support countries in fighting tuberculosis. The new efforts come as a part of USAID’s ‘Global Accelerator to End TB Plus’. The announcements included:
- Working with Congress, USAID will use US$8.5 million to provide increased support to TB programs in conflict settings, especially among the most at-risk populations in Ukraine, Afghanistan, and Burma.
- USAID will select up to two USAID TB priority countries to receive up to an additional US$15 million in FY 2023 funding to roll out new TB innovations at the community and primary healthcare levels, with additional funding planned in FY 2024, subject to the availability of funds.
- USAID and the U.S. Department of State, through the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), in collaboration with the Stop TB Partnership’s Global Drug Facility, worked to secure a 30 percent price reduction for a shortened TB preventive treatment regimen, enabling these agencies to expand their impact, with plans to reach more than 2.5 million individuals with a US$25 million procurement of these treatments.
- To scale up treatment access, USAID will launch a donation program for its TB-priority countries to apply for these drugs.
- USAID is initiating a prevention drug technology transfer to a local pharmaceutical manufacturer in Africa.
- With the SMART4TB Consortium led by Johns Hopkins, USAID launched BREACH-TB, a new foundational clinical trial on a TB preventive treatment regimen that will lay the foundation for the future study of a single-dose, long-acting injectable medicine; and
- As part of USAID’s localization efforts, USAID is committing to allocating 60 percent of TB country funding directly to local partners by 2027.
WHO launches TB vaccine Accelerator Council
The World Health Organization (WHO) officially launched the TB vaccine Accelerator Council to facilitate the development, licensing, and use of new TB vaccines. The Council, supported by the WHO secretariat, will be led by a Ministerial Board, consisting of nine members who will serve on a rotating basis, for a term of two years. The Council will also have subsidiary bodies to support its interaction and engagement with different sectors and stakeholders broadly, including the private sector, scientists, philanthropy, and civil society.
The Council aims to identify innovative sustainable financing, market solutions and partnerships across public, private, and philanthropic sectors. It will leverage platforms like the African Union (AU), Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), BRICS countries (Brazil, Russian Federation, India, China and South Africa), G20, G7 and others to strengthen commitment and actions for novel TB vaccine development and access
The UK announces £5 million additional funding to the TB Alliance
The United Kingdom (UK) will also provide £5 million of additional funding to the TB Alliance to support the development and testing of new or improved tuberculosis treatments, including for multi-drug resistant TB, that further reduce the time to cure TB. This will bring UK’s funding for the TB Alliance up to nearly £70 million since 2017.
With the new political declaration being approved and new funding announced, the TB response is set to get a major boost. All these announcements and commitments not only maintained attention and visibility for the TB response throughout the entire week but represented amazing starting points for the implementation of the Political Declaration.
The work starts today!
Yes! We can end TB!