Fight Back Against Neglected Tropical Diseases

Target: President Barack Obama

Goal: Help fund medicine and healthcare to fight tropical diseases that affect billions of people globally.

Billions of people around the world are affected by a number of deadly tropical diseases that are routinely neglected and not given proper attention. Proper medicines are available to fight these diseases but the countries most in need do not have enough of them. Demand that President Obama increase funding for these international health efforts.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), a host of 17 tropical diseases disproportionately affects developing countries that unfortunately lack enough health infrastructure to combat them on their own. The diseases, including rabies, dengue fever, and a battery of different bacterial infections, cause hundreds of thousands of deaths annually even though tried and true methods of treatment for them exist. To address this issue, the WHO has urged countries to donate $2.9 billion each year until 2020 to help treat the diseases or fight against the creatures that transmit them, like mosquitos and different species of flies.

As a wealthy nation that is privileged enough on the international scale to rarely have to contend with these diseases, we have a responsibility to do what we can to fight them elsewhere. Sign the petition below to demand that President Obama comply with the WHO’s request and help fund this international public health initiative.


Dear President Obama,

I am writing you today regarding a recent announcement by the World Health Organization that asked United Nations members to step up to tackle a number of neglected tropical diseases that affect billions of people each year. We must heed this call to action.

The diseases the WHO is referring to are diseases that are readily preventable and treatable. Unfortunately though, many countries in Asia, Africa, and South America don’t have the resources they need to address every case that occurs in their borders. As a result, the WHO estimates that at least 500,000 people die annually from these totally treatable conditions, with countless others contracting them.

To fight this, the WHO has requested that countries invest $2.9 billion each year until 2020 and then $1.6 billion per year for ten years after that in an international public health initiative specifically targeting these illnesses. It thinks that such funding would allow the organization to practically eliminate many of these diseases from the world.

I’m sure you’ll agree that the undue harm and death these diseases cause is something we have a moral obligation to address to the best of our ability. With that in mind, giving our part of less than $3 billion a year seems like the absolute least we can do. I urge you to comply with the WHO’s request and meet its funding requirements for this new initiative.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Junkyardsparkle via Wikimedia Commons

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