Over the last few weeks, the APPG on Global TB, of which I am a co-Chair, has been leading an inquiry to assist with the development of new tools and treatments for TB and the role that the UK’s Government can play to support research and development.
The estimated number of people falling ill with tuberculosis each year is declining, but TB is still second only to HIV/AIDS as the greatest killer worldwide due to a single infectious agent.
The UK has the highest rate of TB in all of Western Europe and Ealing Southall has one of the highest incidences of TB in the country.
The vast majority of TB cases can be cured when medicines are provided and taken properly, but resistance to anti-TB drugs has been growing and no new TB drugs have been developed and licensed for 42 years.
If we want to eradicate TB, prevention and investment into research are crucial. It is for this reason that the inquiry gathered evidence from key stakeholders from pharmaceutical companies, NGOs, academics to campaigners and private organisations in a bid to create a comprehensive report with clear policy recommendations for improving and amending existing models of R&D for Global Health and will be presented to the UK Departments for International Development, Health, and Business, Innovation and Skills.