Maximilian Geigenmüller- advocacy officer at the Berlinoffice of DSW – Deutsche Stiftung Weltbevoelkerung


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Given the magnitude of the problem, spending on research into poverty-related and neglected tropical diseases is by far not sufficient. Are experiences with the recent Ebola epidemic and the resolutions adopted by this year’s G7 Conferences going to bring about changes? An assessment by Maximilian Geigenmüller of Deutsche Stiftung Weltbevoelkerung.

Rural 21: Mr Geigenmüller, why is DSW engaging in the issue of research and development on poverty-related and neglected diseases?
Maximilian Geigenmüller: Sexual and reproductive health and rights form the core of DSW’s activities. From here, it is just a small step to the area of communicable diseases such as HIV and AIDS or, for example, the specific threat that a malaria infection poses to expecting mothers. We are concerned with ensuring optimum health conditions. For this is vital to enable people to act as independent, self-determining, free individuals who can make the best of the circumstances they are living in. Now, taking the three top-tier infectious diseases, AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria, as well as the 17 neglected tropical diseases, we are then talking about around two billion people world-wide who are directly affected. A major share of these diseases is avoidable or could be contained with relatively small additional efforts.

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