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Rotary International, Gates Foundation, Several Nations Pledge Total Of $1.2B Toward Polio Eradication Efforts

Atlanta Journal-Constitution: Rotary and Gates Foundation pledge $450 million to eradicate polio
“Rotary International and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation pledged [Monday] to raise $450 million to support the end of polio. The announcement was made in Atlanta Monday by Bill Gates and Rotary President John Germ during the 108th international meeting of Rotary International, which brings more than 40,000 Rotarians together to address such issues as disease, water and sanitation, and human trafficking. Rotary committed to raise $50 million annually over the next three years, with every dollar to be matched with two additional dollars from the Gates Foundation…” (Poole, 6/12).

CNN: Why is it taking so long to rid the world of polio?
“…An additional $1.5 billion in funding will be necessary to complete the job of ridding the world of polio, Germ said. The good news is that Canada, Japan, Germany, Australia, the European Union, and the United Arab Emirates have all stepped up with new pledges, while the U.S. continues as the largest government funder of global polio eradication. All told, an additional $1.2 billion in funding was pledged at Monday’s event…” (Scutti, 6/12).

Devex: Polio: Closing in on zero
“…Pledges included $75 million from Canada; $61.4 million from the European Commission; and $55 million from Japan. The United States remains the largest government funder of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative — something Gates acknowledged in his remarks, before expressing concern about cuts to foreign aid in the U.S. and elsewhere. ‘Constant innovation has been key to improving vaccination coverage and reaching more children with the polio vaccine,’ said Dr. Anne Schuchat, acting director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, which is allocating $233 million to polio eradication this year…” (Cheney, 6/13).

Devex: As polio approaches elimination, transition poses risk
“…Advocates and international organizations now believe the transition to a post-polio world will be a pivotal, make-or-break moment for public health. A number of efforts are underway to plan for it now, including the World Health Organization’s recent polio transition planning document, launched at the World Health Assembly last month. … If and when polio is gone, however, much of the transition may fall to national governments. International funding stands to shrink dramatically. About 27 percent of WHO’s $587 million in spending in 2016 went to polio eradication efforts…” (Saldinger, 6/13).

Forbes: Gates Foundation And Rotary Pledge Additional $450 Million To End Polio
“…The money will fund both the administration of oral vaccinations in the countries where children are still at risk for contracting polio, and increase disease surveillance efforts, like testing sewage water, to detect where the virus could still be circulating in communities…” (Tindera, 6/12).

Wall Street Journal: Donors Fund Effort to Declare Polio Eradicated in 2020
“…The Global Polio Eradication Initiative, which includes Rotary, the Gates Foundation, and other organizations, set the cost of polio eradication activities between 2013 and 2019 at $7 billion. The new pledges leave about $300 million still to be raised. The GPEI has missed previous deadlines that it set for eradicating polio … There is reason to hope the latest goal can be met … But some areas controlled by insurgent groups are still hard to reach…” (McKay, 6/12).

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