In October, the World Health Organization (WHO) released its 2012 Global TB Report, which announced that the fight against tuberculosis is at a crossroads.
The report found that 51 million people have been successfully treated for tuberculosis in the last 17 years. Medical breakthroughs and technological advancements have brought successes, including a new diagnostic tool that can test for TB in 100 minutes, and development of the first new TB drugs in more than 40 years, which could be on the market in 2013.
But WHO also points to funding gaps in both research and treatment, which amounts to a total of $4.4 billion.
GlobalPost spoke with Mario Raviglione, director of WHO’s Stop TB Department, about why the funding gap exists, what would help reduce it, and what’s at stake as we choose a path forward.