The Global Polio Eradication Initiative has announced commitments totaling more than $2.6 billion from donor governments and global philanthropies in support of efforts to eradicate polio.
Led by a number of national governments in partnership with the World Health Organization, Rotary International, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, UNICEF, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, GPEI hopes to raise $3.27 billion to fund its Polio Endgame Strategy 2019-2023, which is focused on detecting and interrupting all poliovirus transmission, strengthening immunization systems, and integrating polio surveillance with vaccine-preventable disease surveillance systems. Pledges announced at the Reaching the Last Mile Forum in Abu Dhabi last week included commitments of $1.08 billion from the Gates Foundation and $150 million from Rotary International. Other commitments in support of the strategy include pledges from Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, crown prince of Abu Dhabi ($160 million); Bloomberg Philanthropies ($50 million), Dalio Philanthropies ($25 million), the Tahir Foundation ($15 million), the United Nations Foundation ($6.4 million), Alwaleed Philanthropies ($2 million), the Charina Endowment Fund ($1 million), and the Ningxia Yanbao Charity Foundation ($1 million).
Donor governments announcing commitments at the event include the United States ($215.92 million), Pakistan ($160 million), Germany ($105.05 million), Nigeria ($84.17 million), Norway ($10.83 million), Australia ($10.29 million), Japan ($7.4 million), Luxembourg ($2.22 million), New Zealand ($1.34 million), Spain ($116,000), and Liechtenstein ($10,000). Earlier this month, the United Kingdom announced that it would contribute up to $514.8 million in support of the strategy.
"From supporting one of the world's largest health workforces to reaching every last child with vaccines, the Global Polio Eradication Initiative is not only moving us closer to a polio-free world, it's also building essential health infrastructure to address a range of other health needs," said WHO director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, who chairs the Polio Oversight Board. "We are grateful for the generous pledges made today and thank governments, donors, and partners for standing with us. In particular, I would like to thank His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, for hosting the GPEI pledging moment and for his long-term support for polio eradication."