February 13, 2023
Neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) are a diverse group of 20 conditions designated by the World Health Organization (WHO) that mostly affect impoverished communities. Currently, 1.7 billion people are still at risk of infection worldwide. The WHO has designated January 30 as the World NTD Day with the aim of increasing awareness and support for NTDs which have a major impact on the health of mainly vulnerable people.
As a symbolic event to unite the world on the World NTD Day every year, remarkable landmarks around the world light up in the NTD symbolic colors of purple and orange. The “Light Up” event was cancelled this year due to the recent global energy crisis.
Instead, events were held to bring renewed attention to NTDs and boost support around world. In Japan, 10 people who are involved in NTD activities in diverse fields, including patients and government officials, participated as speakers in the event and shared their thoughts on support for NTDs.
Elimination of NTDs is included in Target 3.3 of SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals) Goal 3 which aims to ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages. The participants discussed the importance of innovation in neglected diseases and investment which enhances innovation, keeping in mind the WHO’s road map 2030 for ending NTDs. Participants also emphasized Japan’s leadership in strengthening support for global health not only from the perspective of Universal Health Coverage (UHC) in which Japan is leading the world, but also from the perspective of security, as the host country of the G7 Summit in May 2023.
As a partner striving to eliminate NTDs, Eisai has cooperated with Japanese NTD partners from the planning stage of the event. Please click here to watch the event video (in Japanese).
Also, please watch see the video message from Dr. Ibrahima Socé Fall (Director, the Department of Control of Neglected Tropical Diseases, WHO) for this event.
We hope that this event has provided an opportunity to spread the key message of World NTD Day 2023 "ACT now ACT together", and enhance the support for NTDs which has been delayed due to the impact of COVID-19.