27 March 2018 | Geneva - donors pledged an additional US dollars 15.3 million to support rapid intervention activities to address disease outbreaks and humanitarian health crises in 2018 through its Emergency Response Fund, the emergency reserve fund (Cerf). In a conference hosted by the organization on Monday (26 March) at its headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, announced Estonia, Germany, the Republic of Korea, Denmark, Canada, Kuwait, Luxembourg, Malta, the United Kingdom of Great Britain, and Northern Ireland, Netherlands, Norway, from contributions ranging from 000 to 20-Six Million Dollars, show that the value of the funding provided to the fund to $23 million. This will enable the organization to rapidly fund health responses in the coming months and, consequently, to bridge that critical gap that arises between the moment an emergency response is identified and when funds can actually be disbursed from other funding mechanisms. Who will seek to ensure that donors continue to be committed to achieving the WHO funding target of US.100 million for the biennium 2018-2019. Denmark, Kuwait, Luxembourg, Malta, and Norway were the first countries to make voluntary contributions to the fund, and the United Kingdom increased its total commitment to the fund from US.10.5 million to the US. 16 million, becoming the second-largest donor to the fund after Germany. Alistair Burt, UK Secretary of state for International Development, said: "for the UK, the emergency reserve fund is an exceptional investment in its quality. We are convinced of the unique and vital role it plays in global efforts to prevent and mitigate health emergencies. Therefore, today we pledge to contribute an additional four million pounds (US 5 5.6 million) to the emergency reserve fund and to work with the organization to better benefit a larger segment of the public from its great value. The group of seven and the group of twenty shares the desire of the United Kingdom for the fund to receive adequate funding. Hence, we urge our fellow member states and donors to heed the organization's call and move forward with financial support to the fund." The emergency reserve fund is distinguished from supplementary funding mechanisms by its ability to disburse funds within twenty-four hours, unlike supplementary mechanisms governed by different funding criteria and slower payment cycles. While other funding mechanisms allow for increased response processes, none of them are aimed at implementing rapid and early response processes. The emergency reserve fund has demonstrated that a small investment can save lives and dramatically reduce the direct costs of Outbreak Control and emergency response. Dr. Peter Salama, WHO deputy director-general for emergency preparedness and response, said: "without the emergency reserve fund, Ebola outbreaks in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Marburg virus disease in Uganda and pneumonic plague in Madagascar would have been out of control. With decisive and rapid intervention, we can stop the spread of disease outbreaks and save thousands of lives at a fraction of a tenth of the cost of any delayed response. The fund has proven its value as one of the global public goods that should be guaranteed to be covered by long-term investment." Since 2015, UNFPA has enabled who, national authorities and health partners to launch rapid interventions on more than 50 disease outbreaks, humanitarian crises, and natural disasters, with over the US dollars 46 million allocated. UNFPA supported the rapid deployment of experts, the improvement of disease detection and reporting activities, the delivery of essential medicines, supplies, and personal protection, increased availability of water, sanitation, and health services, and increased community participation, among many other activities. In this context, the minister of health of Madagascar, Mr. Lalatiana Andriamanarivo, called for increased support for the fund, noting that it was an effective tool in containing the unprecedented outbreak of pneumonic plague that quickly spread throughout the island state of Madagascar in 2017. "We call on our international partners to support the emergency reserve fund to enable who to respond to disease outbreaks around the world and to strengthen national capacities for future health emergency management." In 2017, the fund provided approximately US 21 million for response operations in 23 countries, most of which were disbursed within 24 hours. More than half of allotments (56%) were distributed to the WHO Africa region response operations, 28% were distributed to the WHO Eastern Mediterranean region response operations, and 11% were distributed to the South-East Asia region.