Statement 7 February 2020

WHO EB 146 Agenda Item 13: Neglected tropical diseases


Geneva, 7 February, 2020: IFPMA welcomes the addition of Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs) to the Executive Board agenda. The WHO’s development of the second roadmap on NTDs for 2021-2030 is timely, as we anticipate the coming to an end of the London Declaration – a coalition established in 2012, in which the biopharmaceutical industry pledged 14 billion donated treatments to control or eliminate ten NTDs.

We welcome the Roadmap’s emphasis on endemic country ownership and the importance of sustainable mobilization of domestic resources, and the acknowledgment of a need to avoid potential over-reliance on donations in the long-term. We also support the shift of approaches on NTDs away from vertical programmes towards integrated, patient-centred, cross-cutting and inter-sectoral approaches. Our collaborations on addressing NTDs have shown us that progress on control and elimination will only be accelerated if endemic countries better integrate interventions into national health care systems, consider joint implementation of interventions, and reinforce linkages between health and other sectors such as water and sanitation, education and nutrition.

Combatting NTDs is key to achieve UHC, and when well-integrated with existing national health systems, interventions have the potential to support universal, equitable access to health services.

NTD interventions are some of the largest public health interventions globally, and we have been an active partner throughout – investment by multinational pharmaceutical companies into neglected diseases R&D reached its highest-ever level in 2018 and the industry is now the second-largest funder of product R&D for neglected diseases. However, continued collaboration and partnerships will be critical to ensure sustainability. We look forward to working alongside governments and the global health community to sustain gains and bring innovative solutions to accelerate progress towards the control and elimination of NTDs.


The International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers and Associations (IFPMA) represents over 90 innovative pharmaceutical companies and associations around the world. Our industry’s almost three million employees discover, develop, and deliver medicines and vaccines that advance global health. Based in Geneva, IFPMA has official relations with the United Nations and contributes industry expertise to help the global health community improve the lives of people everywhere. For more information, visit

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Elliot Dunster