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Global Alliance to Eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis (GAELF)

Active Since: 2000

Multi-Company Partnership

Contributing to SDGs…

Bringing together a diverse group of public-private health partners to support the Global Programme to Eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis (GPELF) by mobilising political, financial and technical resources to ensure success.

PARTNER ORGANISATIONS

  • Academia or research institute

    London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine

    Anti-Filariasis Campaign Ministry of Health Sri Lanka

    Case Western Reserve University

    Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

    Centro de Investigacao em Saude de Angola (CISA)

    Children Without Worms

    Drugs for Neglected Diseases initiative (DNDi)

    Eastern & Southern Africa Centre of International Parasite Control (ESACIPAC)

    KEMRI-Wellcome Trust Research Program

    ESACIPAC

    Escola Superior de Tecnologia da Saúde de Lisboa Portugal,

    Ethiopian Public Health Institute (EPHI)

    Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine

    Global Atlas of Helminth Infections (GAHI)

    Government TD Medical College Kerala India

    James Cook University

    Indian Council of Medical Research

    Kenya Medical Research Institute

    Kwame Nkrumah University of Science & Technology

    Nagasaki University

    Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine

    London Centre for Neglected Tropical Disease Research

  • Bilateral Organisations

    US Agency for International Development (USAID)

    African Research Network for Neglected Tropical Diseases

    Arab Fund for Economic and Social Development

    Arab Gulf Programme for Development (AgFund)

    Australian Agency for International Development (AUSAID)

    Department for International Development (DFID)

    European Foundations Initiative for African Research into NTDs (ARNTD)

    Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA)

    Kuwait Fund

    Ministry of Health Labour and Welfare Japan

    Saudi Fund for Development

  • Global NGOs

    The Leprosy Mission

    Catholic Medical Mission Board

    Christian Blind Mission International (CBMI)

    Effect:hope

    END Fund

    Footwork

    Handicap International

    Health and Development International, Norway

    Helen Keller International

    IMA World Health

    International Foundation for Dermatology

    International Skin Care Nursing Group

    International Volunteers in Urology

    LEPRA

    Mectizan Donation Program

    NTD NGDO Network (NNN)

    Sightsavers International

    The Carter Center

  • Government

    National Ministries of Health of the endemic countries

  • Hospitals/Health Facilities

    Amaury Coutihno, Brazil

  • Intergovernmental Organizations and Multilaterals

    World Health Organization (WHO)

    UNICEF

    World Bank

  • Local NGOs

    Charitable Society for Social Welfare (CSSw) Yemen

    Mission to Save the Helpless, Nigeria

  • Pharma company foundation

    Izumi Foundation

  • Private foundation or development organization

    Childrens Investment Fund Foundation (CIFF)

    Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

    Izumi Foundation

  • Life sciences

    Inverness Medical Professional Diagnostics, USA

Objectives

The mission of the Global Alliance to Eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis (GAELF) is to bring together a diverse group of public-private health partners to support the Global Programme to Eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis (GPELF) by mobilising political, financial and technical resources to ensure success.

The global programme’s elimination strategy has two components: (1) to stop the spread of infection (interrupting transmission); and (2) to alleviate the suffering of affected populations (controlling morbidity).

GAELF helps coordinate activities of partners and concentrates on political, financial and technical support.

What are the health needs and challenges?

Lymphatic filariasis (LF), or elephantiasis as it is commonly known, is a mosquito-spread infectious disease that affects 120 million people in more than 50 countries worldwide. Another 856 million people are at risk of infection.

Found in the tropical and sub-tropical areas of Africa, Asia, the Pacific, the Middle East and the Americas, LF is one of the world’s leading causes of disability. It is characterised by severe swelling of the legs and arms and skin infections, and many people affected are unable to work and therefore forced into a life of poverty.

Partnership activities and how they address needs and challenges

The World Health Assembly passed resolution 50:29 in 1997 calling on Member States, working with other partners, to take advantage of the simplified and highly effective strategies to eliminate the disease. In support of this goal, the Global Alliance to Eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis (GAELF) was created to foster partnership together with the WHO in order to support the Global Programme in bringing together ministries, implementing organisations, academia and research organisations to coordinate these efforts.

Mass Drug Administration (MDA)
Elimination of LF is possible by stopping the spread of the infection through preventive chemotherapy. The WHO recommended preventive chemotherapy strategy for LF elimination is mass drug administration of albendazole (donated by GSK), MECTIZAN (donated by MSD), and DEC (donated by Eisai).

WHO recommends the following MDA regimens:

albendazole (400 mg) alone twice per year for areas co-endemic with loiasis
ivermectin (200 mcg/kg) with albendazole (400 mg) in countries with onchocerciasis
diethylcarbamazine citrate (DEC) (6 mg/kg) and albendazole (400 mg) in countries without onchocerciasis

Following recent evidence that indicates that the combination of all three medicines can safely clear almost all microfilariae from the blood of infected people in a shorter duration, WHO now recommends the following MDA regimen in countries without onchocerciasis:

ivermectin (200 mcg/kg) together with diethylcarbamazine citrate (DEC) (6 mg/kg) and albendazole (400 mg) in certain settings.

SDGs THE PARTNERSHIP CONTRIBUTES TO

SDG 3: Good Health and Wellbeing

  1. 3.2: Reduce Under-5 Mortality 
  2. 3.3: Communicable Diseases & NTDs

SDG 5: Gender Equality

SDG 10: Reduced Inequalities

SDG 17: Partnerships for the Goals 

RESULTS & MILESTONES

According to the WHO, from 2000 to 2016, 6.7 billion treatments were delivered to more than 850 million people at least once in 66 countries, considerably reducing transmission in many places. The population requiring MDA has declined by 36% (499 million) where infection prevalence has been reduced below elimination thresholds.

14 countries (Cambodia, The Cook Islands, Egypt, Maldives, Marshall Islands, Niue, Palau, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Togo, Tonga, Vanuatu, Viet Nam and Wallis and Fortuna) are now acknowledged as achieving elimination of LF as a public health problem. Seven additional countries have successfully implemented recommended strategies, stopped large-scale treatment and are under surveillance to demonstrate that elimination has been achieved.

To date, GSK has donated more than 8.5 billion tablets of anti-parasitic medicine, albendazole, to help prevent LF transmission and has committed to donating as much albendazole as needed to the WHO each year until LF is eliminated globally. Eisai has donated approximately 1.6 billion diethylcarbamazine (DEC) tablets to help prevent LF transmission and has committed to continue donating DEC tablets until LF is eliminated globally.