The editorial, "Diseases are on the run in Africa and elsewhere," Oct. 27, calls attention to some good news. In the last decade there has been an astonishing change in the battle against three pandemics. A major reason for this is the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria. It is now saving 100,000 lives each month.
On Dec. 3, world leaders will meet in Washington, D.C., to decide whether we step up efforts in this fight or let these killers again take off. At this conference, the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria is seeking $15 billion to save 10 million lives and execute a strategy to defeat these three diseases.
Since its establishment in 2002, the Global Fund has helped 5.3 million people receive anti-retroviral therapy, detect and treat 11 million cases of TB and distribute 340 million insecticide-treated bed nets. Once again the world depends on U.S. leadership. If the U.S. pledges $5 billion to the Global Fund over the next three years, other donor nations, together, will match our contribution 2:1, which will raise the $15 billion that is needed.
As Dr. Mark Dybul, executive director of the Global Fund, has said, "we have a choice: we can invest now, or pay forever."
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