Geneva, June 26 : Two major health initiatives that will have a substantial impact in the fight against the global tuberculosis (TB) epidemic will be announced on Monday.
A joint announcement will be made by FIND, the Stop TB Partnership, UNITAID and WHO.
TB is one of the world's leading killers - second only to HIV/AIDS - with over 1.5 million deaths and nearly 9 million people falling seriously ill with the disease every year. Almost half a million people a year develop multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB), a dangerous form of TB that is difficult to treat with standard drugs.
The spread of drug-resistant strains, especially the recent emergence of virtually untreatable extensively drug-resistant TB (XDR-TB), threatens to push TB control back into a pre-antibiotic era.
The event will take place at the Salle III, Palais des Nations, Geneva, and the announcement will be made by Dr Mario Raviglione, Director, Stop TB Department, WHO, Dr Jorge Bermudez, Executive Secretary, UNITAID, Dr Giorgio Roscigno, Chief Executive Officer, FIND and Robert Matiru, General Manager, Global Drug Facility, Stop TB Partnership.