GHTC delivers statement on global TB research and innovation strategy at HHS WHA listening session
GHTC delivered the following statement, on the 75th World Health Assembly (WHA) agenda item 14.3 Global strategy for tuberculosis research and innovation, on May 13, 2022 at the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) WHA stakeholder listening session:
Thank you for the opportunity to provide feedback on the global strategy for tuberculosis research and innovation. To reverse the impact of the pandemic, avert preventable deaths, and put the world on track to end tuberculosis (TB), essential TB services must be restored as a matter of urgency, and more domestic and international resources need to be mobilized. It is also critical that the development and uptake of new technologies is part of that investment. The Treatment Action Group reported TB research and development investment of US$915 million in 2020, far below the 2018 UN high-level meeting target of at least US$2 billion per year. Annual funding for TB research needs to more than double to reach the global target.
Therefore, GHTC calls on the United States to:
- Support research capacity globally to expand the pipeline of new and equitably accessible TB tools, especially true point-of-care molecular diagnostics, new antibiotic regimens, and vaccines.
- Address the unmet needs in translational research for TB. The pandemic has demonstrated that rapid sharing of data helps accelerate research and discovery. Some countries have already made strides by using common protocols coordinated through the Regional Prospective Observational Research for Tuberculosis (RePORT) network and contributed data and biospecimens to the platform. The United States should continue to push for additional coordination and collaboration through these platforms.
- Address the drug-resistant TB crisis and close persistent gaps in diagnosis and treatment access and care. The United States should work with the World Health Organization and member states to ensure that the process for including new technologies to fight drug resistant TB on the essential medicines and diagnostics lists and other guidelines is streamlined.