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Editorial, Opinion Pieces Recognize World TB Day, Discuss Steps To End Epidemic

Commercial Appeal: Editorial: Funding to fight tuberculosis is a worthy effort
Editorial Board

“…On this World Tuberculosis Day it is important to remember that TB is not a disease that only impacts the planet’s developing nations, although the intense poverty and dearth of medical care in some countries is destroying families and local economies. … But … good … can happen when caring nations, civil societies, and the private sector pool their resources for a good cause” (3/24).

CNN News: World Tuberculosis Day: The ancient disease that still takes 4,000 lives a day
Linda-Gail Bekker, professor of medicine at Cape Town University, deputy director of the Desmond Tutu HIV Center, and president-elect of the International AIDS Society

“…In 2016, it is salient to ask what can the TB world learn from HIV and vice versa? … Moving the global TB response forward will ultimately need committed political leadership that understands the urgency of a TB-free world with the same sense of commitment and urgency that we seek a world free of HIV. … To complement renewed political commitment it is clear that that to move towards the goal of the elimination of many diseases including TB, we’ll need to cross-pollinate ideas across disciplines and sectors…” (3/24).

Greenville Online: Commentary: We can eradicate TB worldwide
Judy Bello, professor of english and director of the Writing Center at Lander University

“…It may be a cliché, but we really do live in a global economy, and what affects the world affects us. … The eradication of diseases like TB should concern us all — not as a threat to our national health so much as a threat to the development and prosperity of the world’s people. And that, in the long run will affect us more” (3/24).

The Guardian: 14,600 pills over two years — there has to be a better way to treat TB
Philippe Douste-Blazy, chair of UNITAID

“…The international community must do more to support public funding of research. Their support can play a catalytic role in helping to defeat this ancient scourge, which is still one of the most lethal infectious diseases. … First, we need to provide shorter, more effective treatment. … [W]e need diagnostic tools better suited to the needs of children … New ideas can change the trajectory of the pandemic…” (3/24).

Huffington Post: ‘Make it Stop’: The Tender Casualties of Drug-Resistant Tuberculosis
Jennifer Furin, infectious diseases specialist, medical anthropologist, and lecturer at Harvard Medical School

“…The children affected by [drug-resistant TB (DR-TB)] have given us a clear mandate to which we should all pledge ourselves on this commemorative day: make it stop. Demand that new drugs for children be registered; that global guidelines be rapidly updated to endorse better treatment for children; that donors prioritize funding initiatives that focus on this vulnerable population; that post-exposure prevention measures become a part of routine care…” (3/22).

The Hill: This World TB Day, tuberculosis is still a global threat
Former Rep. J. Phillip Gingrey (R-Ga.), senior adviser at the District Policy Group

“…Despite the dangers of TB, not enough money has been invested in research and development (R&D) to accurately diagnose, treat, and search for a vaccine to prevent the disease. … We need to unite as a global community to encourage policymakers and funders to make TB a priority and devote more funding to vaccine technologies and treatments…” (3/24).

Huffington Post: U.N. Special Envoy on Tuberculosis: Giving Voice to the Voiceless
Eric Goosby, U.N. secretary general’s special envoy on tuberculosis

“…I praise President Obama for his commitment to global health, especially during tough economic times. Yet, with TB now taking the most lives around the globe, I remain puzzled by the size of this year’s [proposed] cut to critical TB programs. It is not just the size of the cut. It is the magnitude of the impact. … It is once again up to Congress to make needed investments in testing and treatment and research and development. Congress has the ability to turn the tide and rid the world from TB. We have the cure, we now need the political will…” (3/24).

Orlando Sentinel: Funding will save millions worldwide from tuberculosis
Susan Keller, attorney

“…The Global Fund now has a plan that will save eight million more lives and prevent 300 million infections in the next three years. This fall, world leaders will come together to pledge their support for that plan. If they commit the resources required, together we can not only continue to save lives, but actually be on track to end these epidemics for good. … The U.S. should commit to investing a third of the resources needed over the next three years to put that plan into action” (3/23).

Huffington Post: Tuberculosis Cannot Be Silenced By Political Borders
Maree Nutt, CEO of RESULTS International Australia

“…It’s time for Australia to lead the way in terms of TB prevention and treatment by pledging a commitment of $300 million to the Global Fund as part of an overall increase to the Australian aid budget. Why is Australia’s pledge so important? Firstly, investing in the Global Fund represents an excellent return on investment. … Of course, our country’s health security is a factor. But, most importantly, people … depend on Australia’s commitment…” (3/24).

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