The largest private foundation in the world, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation works to help all people lead healthy, productive lives. In developing countries, it focuses on improving people's health and giving them the chance to lift themselves out of hunger and poverty. In the US, it seeks to improve high school and postsecondary education.
Since 2003, BCG has partnered with the foundation, supporting its global focus on enhancing health care and reducing extreme poverty in developing countries, as well as its work to strengthen education in the US.
We have worked with the foundation on many topics over the years, including developing strategies to combat diseases, creating and strengthening public-private partnerships, and designing approaches for delivering health interventions. We have worked across many diseases including HIV, TB, malaria, diarrheal disease, pneumonia, and others—and worked to advance drugs, vaccines, and diagnostics.
Some of our efforts include helping to formulate a strategy for eradicating polio and fighting HIV. We also worked alongside the foundation and bKash—a company the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is an investor in—to increase access to financial services for the poor in Bangladesh. Together we designed a target operating model and governance structure that will promote interoperability, connecting bKash customers to the formal banking system and access to a wider range of financial products and services.
As an example, we share more detail here on our work developing strategies for eradicating malaria in the developing world.
Malaria affects more than 200 million people each year. In 2013 alone, it caused an estimated 580,000 deaths—mostly in Africa; more than three-quarters of these were children under the age of five.
In the past, organizations have focused on controlling malaria, but the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has challenged the world to eradicate the disease. BCG helped the foundation develop an eradication strategy that focuses on using existing diagnostics, drugs, and transmission-prevention tools and on identifying new treatment and prevention tools worthy of investment. The strategy helped the foundation clearly define how it would contribute to eradication. Eradicating malaria will save millions of lives and billions of dollars.
Interview with the Former CEO
The Gates Foundation’s Jeff Raikes on Catalyzing Change
BCG brings a tremendous amount of institutional history in the global health space, and an ability to go hard and fast at a problem. It brings real rigor and an external perspective to help us ensure we’re solving the right problems and to bear down and get to answers quickly.
Great progress has been made against malaria, but still, too many die from what is a preventable disease. We’re at a critical juncture in the fight, and new approaches and tools are needed.
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is committed to eradicating malaria, and BCG supported the foundation in crafting a strategy that could accelerate elimination across sub-Saharan Africa and Asia.
The strategy takes the tools we have today—drugs, diagnostics, and vector control—and uses them in new ways. It also focuses on transformative new tools that could fundamentally alter the disease landscape.