First Lady in Geneva for World Health Summit

By Durell Namasani

First Lady, Madame Monica Chakwera, is currently in Geneva, Switzerland, where she is attending the World Health Summit as the Tuberculosis Ambassador for Malawi and the SADC Region.

The First Lady is expected to deliver an official address at the summit on May 29, 2024, and she recently participated in the WHA77 side event focusing on breaking barriers and utilizing digital technology for early action on diseases.

Madam Chakwera

Before travelling to Switzerland, Madame Chakwera recently hosted a luncheon at Kamuzu Palace for TB survivors and partners working towards ending TB in Malawi on March 30, 2024.

Madame Chakwera’s attendance at the event was made possible through an invitation from the Stop TB Partnership, which launched the Coalition of Leaders during the United Nations General Assembly High-Level Week in New York in September 2023 to lead global efforts to end Tuberculosis (TB).

During the same week, the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) High-Level Meeting on Tuberculosis passed a political Declaration that includes targets and commitments to be achieved by 2027.

The World TB Report (2022) revealed that TB claimed 1.3 million lives, including 167,000 individuals living with HIV, in 2022 alone. In Malawi, there were 26,000 reported TB cases in 2021, resulting in 3,000 deaths. The country had 45% of TB cases undetected, indicating a significant number of undiagnosed cases.

However, Malawi has made significant progress, with the incidence of TB declining from 338 people per 100,000 population in 2010 to 125 people per 100,000 population in 2022.