Tuesday, 17 April 2012


The Brazilian Ministry of Health has entered into a strategic alliance with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to prioritize the development of solutions for pressing global health issues.
According to a statement released by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundations, the alliance would dedicate resources to explore new ways of tackling challenges associated with vaccines, nutrition, maternal and child health, and infectious disease control.
“First initiative of the alliance is the launch of Grand Challenges Brazil, a program to accelerate research to improve the health of women and children,” read a statement in part.

According to a statement, the flagship initiative under the alliance was the launch later this year of Grand Challenges Brazil – a program aimed at catalyzing innovative health research.
Under the alliance, initially focused on maternal and child health, the Ministry of Health, National Council on Research and the Gates Foundation will allocate up to USD $8 Million (R $14.7 Million) for research to prevent and manage pre-term birth.
"Solutions developed in Brazil may have an important impact not only domestically but also abroad, leading to the country being acknowledged internationally for its capacity for innovation in health," said Brazilian health minister Alexandre Padilha.
Complications related to pre-term birth are the second leading cause of death in children under five globally, and solutions developed in Brazil could have broad impact both within and beyond its borders.
"The Gates Foundation's investment in Brazil is a recognition of the Brazilian scientific capacity. Investment in research and innovation in health is a priority of the Ministry of Health in this government" said Secretary of Science, Technology and Strategic Supplies of the Ministry of Health, Carlos Gadelha.
The strategic alliance builds on the expanding collaboration between the Brazilian government and the Gates Foundation. The two partners are already collaborating to control tuberculosis and dengue fever and improve productivity among small famers, as announced by Bill Gates in a report to the G20 last November.
Among other goals, the alliance will work to fund the development and manufacturing of vaccines to better meet the needs of the GAVI Alliance and to explore cutting-edge vaccine research.
The alliance is grounded in the Brazilian Ministry of Health and the Gates Foundation’s shared goal of promoting health equity. Brazil’s strong network of researchers and universal public health system create an opportunity to develop breakthrough health advances. The Gates Foundation’s commitment to accelerate the development of life-saving technologies will support these advances to improve the lives of Brazilians and millions of people around the world.
“Brazil’s leadership is helping to ensure that innovation in health is prioritized,” said Trevor Mundel, president of the global health program at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. "We believe this collaboration can serve as a model for international donors and emerging economies to work together for global impact.”

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