An audit (.pdf) of U.S. projects to rebuild Afghanistan “found a ‘confusing labyrinth’ of agencies and contractors in a poorly coordinated aid effort” that cannot easily demonstrate how money is being spent, a report from the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) said on Wednesday, Reuters reports (10/27).
Programs, Funding & Financing
Reuters reports that the developers of a vaginal microbicide gel containing the antiretroviral tenofovir which has been found to reduce “HIV infections in women by 39 percent,” said that during meetings last week the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted fast track approval designation to the gel, which expedites the review of drugs by the agency.
Marking the 10th anniversary of U.N. Security Council Resolution 1325 â€“ the first “to recognize the importance of women’s ‘full involvement’ in efforts to maintain and promote peace and security” â€“ Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Tuesday together with U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and diplomats called for increased action to end sexual violence in war and increase women’s involvement in peace-building efforts, the Associated Press/Forbes reports (10/26).
A new report (.pdf) highlights concerns about donors, especially from Europe, following through on funding pledges for the G8’s $22 billion global food security fund, Business Daily reports (Odhiambo, 10/27).
Also In Global Health News: Flooding, HIV Treatment Adherence, and Economic Growth In Africa; China Detects Superbug; U.S. Aid To Myanmar; Cash-Transfer Programs
1.8M Now Affected By Flooding In West And Central Africa; Hardest Hit-Benin Struggles With Disease, Damaged Health Centers Flooding continues to devastate Central and West AfricaÂ â€“ more than 1.8 million people have been affected and 400 killed, according to the U.N., United Press International reports. “The nation of Benin has…
The bivalent oral polio vaccine (bOPV) was found to induce a “significantly higher immune response” than the existing trivalent oral polio vaccine (tOPV), according to a study published on Tuesday in the journal Lancet, Reuters reports (Kelland, 10/26).
Panel Examines Global Food Security Ahead Of La Francophonie Summit; Global Fund, UNAIDS Call For Greater Cooperation Among French-Speaking Countries
World Trade Organization Director-General Pascal Lamy highlighted concerns about the global food situation on Friday during a roundtable discussion on the sidelines of the International Organisation of La Francophonie summit, Agence France-Presse reports.
During a visit with government officials, industry leaders and NGOs in India last week, representatives from Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA), a U.S. lobbying group that represents the country’s pharmaceutical industry and biotechnology companies, addressed “the Indian government’s proposal to allow local drugmakers to make low-cost version of patented drugs so that they can be made available to patients,” the Economic Times reports. “Issuing compulsory licensing is not a long-term solution and will be counterproductive,” PhRMA Executive VP Christopher Singer said.
The New York Times profiles USAID Administrator Rajiv Shah and examines the challenges that come with leading the development agency at this point in time. “A staunch supporter of Mr. Obama’s candidacy, he said he viewed his election as a Kennedy moment â€“ worth trading weekend hikes in Washington State for the Beltway slog of Washington,” the New York Times writes of Shah, who explained his decision to join the government by describing himself as a “chronic complainer when we’re not in power.” Shah said, “I believe that these moments in history, when you have this kind of president, are rare.”
To Reach MDGs, Citizens Must Demand More From Political Leaders, Former U.N. Secretary-General Tells U.N. Foundation Board Meeting
At a U.N. Foundation board meeting in Ghana to discuss Millennium Development Goal progress, which concluded on Saturday, former U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan “called on the citizenry to demand the attainment of these set goals from their political leaders,” the Accra Mail reports. “It is only through this that we can put pressure on the politician to work towards achieving these goals,” he said, according to the newpaper.