Combined, HIV/AIDS, malaria, and tuberculosis (TB) represents the leading cause of death due to infectious diseases in the world. Since the year 2002, huge progress has been made: mortality rates linked to TB, malaria and AIDS have dropped by 47%, 47% and 74% respectively, while 84% of people diagnosed with HIV are on antiretroviral treatment, reducing the risk of HIV transmission by 90%. Despite that progress, we are not on the right track to end these epidemics by 2030, as stipulated by the international community under the Sustainable Development Goal 3.
The impact of COVID-19 on AIDS, TB, and malaria has been dramatic, leading to a slowdown of progress for the first time in 20 years. But in 2021, global targets returned to show some progress:
- 21.9 million people were reached with antiretroviral therapy for HIV, an increase of 8.8% compared to the previous year
- more than 188 million mosquito nets were distributed to protect populations from malaria – an increase of 17% from the previous year.
- However, the number of people treated for TB was also reduced by 18%.
Human rights violations also contribute to these figures: marginalised, discriminated and criminalised populations, like men who have sex with men, sex workers, or injected drug users are most exposed because of their reduced access to care or prevention.
“« We will only win the battle against HIV if we lift obstacles linked to human rights violations faced by key populations, which makes them more vulnerable to infections and prevent their access to health services. »”Peter SandsExecutive Director of the Global Fund to fight HIV/Aids, TB and Malaria
TB kills more than any other infectious disease after COVID-19. Over a third of cases are not diagnosed. There are tools to cure TB and deaths could be prevented if countries were equipped with the right materials and medical products (radios, detection kits). The very slow decrease of TB incidence rate resulted in the emergence of drug-resistant TB, with higher rates in South East Asia and Eastern Europe, and Central Asia.
Malaria, a mosquito-borne disease, is closely linked to poverty: mortality rates go off the roof in countries with the highest rates of extreme poverty. The fight against malaria is suffering from chronic under-financing: investments are stagnating while resistance to insecticide is growing in Africa and in the Mekong region.
Focus on the Global Fund to fight HIV/Aids, TB and malaria | Created in 2002, the Global Fund was conceived as an innovative financing tool meant to help the international community centralise public and private resources allocated to the fight against HIV/Aids, tuberculosis and malaria. Today, Global Fund investments helped save 50 million lives around the world, guaranteed access to antiretrovirals to 23,3 million people, supported treatment of 5.3 million people with TB and distributed over 133 million mosquito nets to support the fight against of malaria.
In order to eliminate those epidemics by 2030, we are asking for:
- France and the EU to maintain an ambitious level of financing for the Global Fund to fight HIV/Aids, TB and malaria, and that pledges committed during replenishment conferences are effectively disbursed.
- The « Initiative », an indirect contribution from France to the Global Fund, aiming to optimise impact of grants via technical assistance, to remain a multistakeholder structure, within which real needs of beneficiaries are prioritised over the strategic interests of France.
- Community actors to be integrated and increasingly supported in the fight against epidemics. They play a key role to reach most vulnerable and marginalised populations. Their effective contribution to the fight against epidemics and to safeguarding human rights does no longer need to be demonstrated.
- France to reinforce its political and financial support in favor of the fight against Tuberculosis, which suffers an acute financing gap due to the historic lack of donor mobilization on this disease.
- Multilateral global health funds to integrate their activities within a health systems’ approach so that their specific interventions benefit health systems more widely and improve their sustainability and their financing independence, including during and after transition periods.