From 2003 to 2016, FIND catalysed the development of 21 new diagnostic tools in previously neglected areas and worked with partners to ensure appropriate regulatory approval, introduction and use. FIND has facilitated the development of additional new tools through the provision of well-characterised samples and access to clinical trial sites.
As of the end of 2016, FIND’s estimated impacts included:
- Rolling out new tuberculosis (TB) diagnostic tests: an estimated 400,000 lives saved each year, representing a decrease of more than 20% in TB mortality, an over 20% reduction in the average infectious period for TB and an over 25% decrease in TB prevalence;
- Ten years of implementing the FIND-WHO Quality Assurance Programme for Malaria RDTs: 247 unique rapid diagnostic test products from manufacturers have been fully evaluated; a 28% increase in the number of quality-assured tests procured by countries; twice since 2014, the number of RDTs procured exceeded the number of malaria treatments (ACTs) distributed in the WHO African Region, a measure of appropriate use of antimicrobials that will help to reduce malaria drug resistance;
- Implementing a global human African trypanosomiasis (HAT) elimination strategy supported by all major stakeholders, and based on integrated programming using vector control for prevention, and new tests and treatment;
- Enabling the safe collection of blood from a finger-prick in some 160 million patients for rapid malaria and HIV diagnostic tests in 2016 alone;
- Building greater in-country diagnostic capacity: FIND trained approximately 4,400 healthcare workers and conducted laboratory development/quality improvement work with over 360 laboratories in 39 countries.
Beyond these direct results, FIND’s work positively impacts the broader health and development context. The economic burden of the diseases addressed by FIND is significant. Improved health outcomes for patients and promoting stronger health systems have direct impacts on economic growth and poverty reduction.
Appropriate diagnostics have the potential to improve health outcomes by more quickly identifying appropriate treatments. This also decreases costs by eliminating inappropriate therapies. For example, correct diagnosis through malaria RDT use in Senegal has halved the use of ACT treatment, saving the country and the Global Fund €1.2 million.