“Spending to improve health in developing countries has continued to grow during the three-year economic downturn, although at only half the blistering pace it did a decade ago,” according to a report (.pdf) by researchers at the University of Washington’s Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME), the Washington Post reports (Brown, 12/14). “The report details the trends in development assistance for health between 1990 and 2009 from aid agencies and governments in 23 developed countries, multilateral institutions such as the [WHO], and hundreds of non-profit groups and charities with preliminary estimates for 2010 and 2011,” an IHME press release states (12/14). “Overall, spending on malaria and child health problems has grown more rapidly in the past few years than spending on AIDS and tuberculosis,” according to the report, the Washington Post notes (12/14).
US Global Health Policy
This post in the Center for Global Health Policy’s “Science Speaks” blog examines how potential budget cuts are threatening the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research (WRAIR) Military HIV Research Program (MHRP), “a $175 million program supported by the Department of Defense and other entities that is vulnerable to cuts…
In this TIME “Ideas” opinion piece, David Bowen, CEO of Malaria No More, writes that with the right resources and political will, an end to malaria is possible. He recounts progress made against the disease, citing a report by the WHO released Tuesday that shows “deaths from malaria have fallen by more than 25 percent globally since 2000 — and by more than five percent in the last year alone,” and writes, “Despite these gains, much more needs to be done. The unacceptable fact still remains that malaria claims a child’s life in Africa every minute. The world has begun to mobilize the skills, resources and innovative genius needed to end this terrible death toll.”
In this Huffington Post opinion piece, Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.) writes about access to safe drinking water and improved sanitation among the world’s poor, stating, “As America prepares for the holiday season … I hope that Congress will give a gift of life, health and hope by helping people around the world with something that most Americans take for granted: safe drinking water.”
In this post in the Hill’s “Congress Blog,” John Castellani, president and CEO of Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, reports on how biopharmaceutical exports benefit the U.S. economy and global health, writing, “Leadership is needed to help keep U.S. biopharmaceutical research companies competitive in the global export market.” He continues, “According to the Administration, if we increased exports by just five percent, we would create hundreds of thousands of new U.S. jobs. … Among the ways that they can advance this effort is by knocking down foreign barriers and promoting strong intellectual property (IP) protections that allow biopharmaceutical companies to bring their medicines into other markets and, importantly, to the patients who need them.”
USAID provides an infographic describing how, “[u]nder President Obama’s Global Health Initiative, USAID will work with other global leaders in child health to help save five million children between 2010 and 2015” through targeted interventions for the leading causes of preventable death among children (12/13).
Africa’s Sahel region is facing a potential “food crisis,” “[b]ut the good news is that the world’s Famine Early Warning System Network (FEWS NET) is giving West African countries and donor nations a period of time to prepare, says the aid group Oxfam,” the Christian Science Monitor reports. “Early reports suggest that as many as six million people in Niger and 2.9 million people in Mali live in vulnerable areas, where low rainfall, falling groundwater levels, poor harvests, lack of pastureland, rising food prices, and a drop in remittances from family members living abroad are starting to take their toll,” according to the newspaper.
“We welcome the Obama administration’s announcement of a farsighted effort to treat millions more [people living with HIV] abroad, especially in sub-Saharan Africa,” a New York Times editorial writes. “The administration expects that the expanded treatments can be paid for with existing resources, by pushing for greater efficiencies and more financing from recipient nations. But if that effort stalls, the administration should re-evaluate quickly whether to ask Congress for money,” the editorial states.
After experiencing a decline in the number of new HIV infections in the 1990s, Uganda’s “HIV [incidence] rate is creeping back up again. New infections are increasing, and the sense of urgency has vanished,” the Globe and Mail reports, adding that the country “has become an early warning signal to the rest of the world: If the fight against AIDS fades into complacency and neglect, the disease can roar back again.” The article discusses how complacency among the general population, as well as government policies of Uganda and the U.S., “have contributed to the rise in HIV infections here, analysts say” (York, 12/9).
In this post in the U.S. Department of State’s “DipNote” blog, U.S. Global AIDS Coordinator Ambassador Eric Goosby and Melanne Verveer, ambassador-at-large for global women’s issues, report on the relationship between gender-based violence (GBV) and HIV, writing, “The United States recognizes the importance of preventing and responding to GBV within…