The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria on Tuesday released Issue 4 of its newsletter, the “Global Fund News Flash.” The issue features a commentary by Mireille Guigaz, a Global Fund Board member representing France, on the Global Fund’s work in Madagascar, and a piece examining “a Board decision last November that 55 percent of all funding for grant renewals should go to low-income countries,” among other stories (6/19).
During a live webcast discussing recent changes at the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, “[p]anelists discussed the fund’s new strategy and what this strategy means for the global fight against these three diseases,” GlobalPost’s “Global Pulse” blog reports. J. Stephen Morrison, senior vice president and director of the Global Health Policy Center at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, noted the Global Fund’s new general manager, Gabriel Jaramillo, had moved quickly in focusing on restructuring and realigning the fund, according to the blog. Todd Summers, independent consultant and chair of the Strategy, Investment & Impact Committee at the Global Fund, said, “Now we see lots of opportunity to really make a big difference and change forever the trajectory” of the epidemics, “Global Pulse” notes.
The Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) on Wednesday “held a live, interactive webcast to examine recent changes at the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria and the implications for U.S. global health policy,” the foundation reports on its webpage, where a video recording of the webcast is available. “A panel of experts discussed the Global Fund’s recent funding challenges and reorganization, how the U.S. and other donor nations are responding to these changes, and the future outlook for the Fund’s efforts to address HIV, TB, and malaria around the world,” KFF notes (6/13).
“Two years after some $22 million in donor funds were pumped into malaria control along the Cambodia-Thailand border to fight off suspected resistance to treatment, health workers say the battle is not over,” IRIN reports, adding, “The government reported 103,000 malaria infections and 151 deaths nationwide in 2010. A year later, 85,000 reported infections led to 93 deaths — a 38-percent decline in mortality.” “‘If you take your foot off the â€¦ [accelerator] we can lose everything we have done in the past two to three years,’ Steven Bjorge, anti-malaria team leader in Cambodia for the [WHO], told IRIN in February 2012,” the news service writes.
“Malawi’s new president, Joyce Banda, has inherited an unenviable to-do list from former president Bingu wa Mutharika, and AIDS activists are hoping that bolstering the donor-dependent AIDS response will be one of her most urgent priorities,” PlusNews reports. “An estimated 10 percent of the adult population is HIV-positive, with about 70,000 Malawians newly infected with HIV every year,” the news service writes, adding, “Yet the country is almost entirely dependent on external funding for its AIDS programs, and ambitious plans to scale up treatment have been derailed after the Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria rejected a succession of funding proposals.”
The June issue of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria’s email newsletter, the “Global Fund News Flash,” was released on Thursday. The issue highlights the Global Fund’s “Better Grants for Increased Impact” project, discusses malaria in Madagascar, notes the launch of the (RED) RUSH TO ZERO campaign, profiles Indonesia Fund Portfolio Manager Gail Steckley, and features a new cell phone application from Charity Miles, which “enables people to earn money for charity simply by walking, running or biking” (6/7).
Aidspan, an independent watchdog of the Global Fund, on Tuesday published Issue 187 of its “Global Fund Observer.” The issue includes an article on an Office of the Inspector General (OIG) report on its audit of eight Global Fund grants in Kenya; an article examining how reprogramming existing grants can improve their impact; and commentary from Bernard Rivers, executive director of Aidspan, about the Round 2 grants in Kenya (6/5).
Al Jazeera’s “Counting the Cost” program on Saturday focused on the fight against malaria and the “business behind its treatment and prevention.” According to the program, progress against malaria “is being threatened in these tough economic times. There is a $3 billion shortfall in funding for malaria treatment and prevention.” The program reports on drug-resistant malaria strains in South-East Asia; examines a vaccine candidate under development by GlaxoSmithKline; speaks with Jo Lines of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and Christoph Benn of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria about the impact of the international financial crisis on the fight against the disease; and discusses a mobile phone app developed by a group of medical students that would help people receive a quicker diagnosis and treatment (Santamaria, 5/26).
In a report released last week, Members of Parliament (MPs) on the International Development Committee urged the U.K. to increase its donation to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, according to a Committee press release (5/22). “Ministers have said they will increase the commitment, but the MPs are concerned that this money” — pledged by ministers over a year ago — “has not yet been delivered, nor the amount of the increase confirmed,” BBC News writes (Dreaper, 5/22).
“This year marks the 10th anniversary of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, the world’s most powerful tool in the fight against the three pandemics,” Jonathan Klein, co-founder and CEO of Getty Images, Inc., writes in this post in the Huffington Post Blog, adding, “Since 2002, the Global Fund has saved and improved millions of lives.” Klein notes the Board of the Global Fund convened in Geneva, Switzerland, for its 26th meeting last week, where Board members “discussed progress to date on the current transformation of the Global Fund from emergency response to long-term sustainability.”