RLM Forum

The biennial Reaching the Last Mile (RLM) Forum convenes global health leaders to share insights and best practices on how to map out, eliminate and eradicate infectious diseases.

This year, under the theme “Accelerating the Pace,” the Forum will bring together high-level guests from across government, private sector, philanthropy and academia to discuss reaching the last mile of disease elimination faster. The one-day, by invitation only event, held on 19th November in Abu Dhabi, will convene more than 250 preeminent global leaders and feature several major announcements. Interactive sessions, discussions, and workshops will celebrate success, highlight challenges, and identify solutions through the use of vaccines, technology, global health infrastructure, and public-private partnerships.


A number of prominent global health leaders will present and engage in on-stage panel discussions throughout the day.

Rt. Hon. Helen Clark
Former Prime Minister of New Zealand
Dr. Tedros Ghebreyesus
Director General of the WHO
Dr. Maha Barakat
Chair of the RBM Partnership to End Malaria
Dr. Seth Berkley
CEO of Gavi, The Vaccine Alliance
Ellen Agler
CEO of the END Fund
Robyn Calder Harawi
Executive Director of The ELMA Philanthropies Services (U.S.) Inc.
Sir Richard Feachem
Professor of Global Health at UC-San Francisco
Corine Karema
Senior Technical Advisor for Infectious Diseases at Quality and Equity HealthCare
Ira Magaziner
CEO of Clinton Health Access Initiative
Dr. Raj Panjabi
CEO of Last Mile Health
Chuck Slaughter
Founder of Living Goods
Dr. Timothy Shriver
Chairman of Special Olympics International


  • Registration: Refreshments and light breakfast served

  • Welcome and Opening Keynotes: The Master of Ceremonies will open the Forum, followed by keynote addresses from local and international global health leaders

  • Discussion – Health for All: Building the Health Workforce: Six weeks after the UN high-level meeting on Universal Health Coverage, speakers will share strategies for empowering health workers and ensuring they reach the most vulnerable populations

  • Announcement from WHO AFRO: The WHO AFRO team will make an announcement on vaccine preventable diseases

  • Coffee Break: Guests will have the opportunity to network and explore the exhibition space, which will feature highlight specific disease elimination efforts, technology demonstrations and information on the threat that climate change poses to derail hard-won global health victories

  • Progress and Challenges in the Last Mile: A discussion chair will lead two separate panels of international experts in discussing recent progress made on disease elimination and solutions for overcoming challenges in accessing the last mile

  • Breakout Session A – Heroes from the Field: Health workers, innovators and experts will share their personal stories from the field, touching on themes of applying lessons from successful disease elimination initiatives to other diseases areas, developing innovative solutions to deliver lifesaving supplies, and accessing the health system in remote communities

  • Breakout Sesssion B – Leveraging Technology to Strengthen Health Systems: Technology partners will demo and share their solutions for improving health systems, from new solutions for streamlining operational processes to advances in data analytics for tracking and predicting outbreaks

  • Lunch

  • In Pursuit of the End of Malaria – Presenting the Findings of the Lancet Commission on Malaria Eradication: This session will highlight the findings for the Lancet report, followed by a moderated discussion

  • Fireside Chat with the Incoming CEO of GLIDE: This session will feature a short discussion with the new CEO of the Global Institute for Disease Elimination (GLIDE), which was announced in 2017 and will open this year in Abu Dhabi as the first institute of its kind in the region

  • NTD Announcements

  • Panel Discussion – Cooperating to Accelerate the Pace on Disease Elimination: A high level panel comprised of international global health leaders will discuss how governments, philanthropy, financial institutions and multilaterals can work together to reach the last mile faster

  • Polio Pledging Moment: Prominent leaders in global health will highlight their commitments to GPEI’s Endgame Strategy 2019-2023

  • Presentation of the REACH Awards: The REACH Award Ceremony will honor the unsung heroes, innovators and advocates working on the front lines of disease elimination efforts, recognizing those who have demonstrated extraordinary leadership and commitment

  • Wrap-up and Closing