HIV, TB, malaria fight saves 50-M lives

A new fundraiser aims to save 20 million more lives

GENEVA, Switzerland (AFP) — The fight against human immuno-deficiency virus, tuberculosis and malaria has saved 50 million lives over the past 20 years, the Global Fund said Monday as it appeals for $18 billion to save millions more.

“We have made tremendous progress,” the global partnership created in 2002 to battle the three deadly diseases said in its annual report, with their death rates halved since then.

“But our fight is not over,” it cautioned, pointing to a range of colliding crises, including climate change, conflicts and the Covid-19 pandemic, that “threaten to knock us backward.”

The Global Fund will next week hold a replenishment conference in New York, where it aims to raise at least $18 billion in funds to cover its programs from 2024 through 2026.

The fund, which brings together governments, multi-lateral agencies, bilateral partners, civil society groups, people affected by the diseases and the private sector, estimates that financing would help cut HIV, TB and malaria deaths by nearly two-thirds and save 20 million lives.

Since March 2020, the Global Fund said it had invested more than $4.4 billion to fight the pandemic and mitigate its impact on its programes.

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