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HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria — the 'big three' of global diseases - attract the lion's share of international health funding. But this bias has left many widespread tropical diseases shunted to the sidelines.

In this article in The Lancet David H. Molyneux of the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, says that river blindness, Guinea worm infections and other chronic disabling diseases are both cheap and easy to treat — unlike HIV/AIDS. He adds that such interventions bring a raft of other benefits.

Using the Global Fund to invest relatively modestly in treating such neglected diseases will, says Molyneux, both reduce the impact of these diseases and strengthen health systems of the poorest nations. But if policy makers persist in ignoring these conditions, they risk perpetuating inequity and diverting human resources from highly achievable goals.

Link to full article in The Lancet