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Kaiser Daily Global Health Policy Report

In The News

G20 Foreign Ministers Meeting In Germany Will Discuss Fighting Poverty In Africa

Reuters: G20 foreign ministers to tackle fight against poverty in Africa
“G20 foreign ministers will discuss ways to fight poverty in Africa, strengthen governmental institutions, and better utilize the potential of many African countries, German ministry officials said on the eve of a two-day meeting in Bonn…” (Shalal, 2/15).

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In More Interviews, Bill, Melinda Gates Discuss Global Health Issues

Bloomberg Businessweek: Melinda Gates Explains Concerns About Mexico City Policy
In this video, “Melinda Gates, co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, discusses the impact of the Mexico City policy on foreign aid with Bloomberg Businessweek Editor in Chief Megan Murphy…” (2/14).

Capital FM News: EXCLUSIVE: Melinda Gates talks contraception, her Catholic faith, and Kenyans
“…While it had been made clear in the preparation for the Capital FM News interview with Melinda that she would not be discussing the election of U.S. President Donald Trump, she did respond to the question of whether she was concerned the change in administration and its ‘America First’ policy would result in a reduction of funding to the Vaccine Alliance; her answer: every effort had been made to impress upon the Trump administration, the life impacting nature of what Gavi makes possible…” (Burrows, 2/16).

GeekWire: Full Interview: Bill Gates on global health, clean energy, Trump, Microsoft, and the future of the world
“Nearly a decade after leaving his full-time job at Microsoft, Bill Gates sat down with GeekWire for an extensive interview about his work at the Gates Foundation, progress in global health and clean energy, and his outlook on the world. The billionaire investor was optimistic about the future, and said he believes the U.S. can continue to lead the way in science, innovation, energy, and more…” (Bishop, 2/15).

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Director Of Gates Foundation's HIV Program Discusses Accelerating Momentum To Lower Disease Incidence In Devex Interview

Devex: Q&A: The director of the Gates Foundation’s HIV program on what’s needed to accelerate efforts
“…Devex caught up with Emilio Emini, director of the HIV program at the [Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation], to check in on the progress that has been made in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of the disease, as well as what more is needed to control the epidemic. Emini spent 32 years in the pharmaceutical industry before taking on what he jokes is his retirement job. But amid growing concerns about the future of funding for HIV, he admits he now has his work cut out for him. His focus now is on how to accelerate momentum on lowering the incidence of infection…” (Cheney, 2/15).

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Dementia Tops AIDS As No. 7 Leading Cause Of Death Worldwide, According To WHO

Bloomberg: Dementia Joins Ranks of Top Global Killers With No Drug in Sight
“Dementia has unseated AIDS as one of the world’s top killers, new figures from the World Health Organization show, as drugmakers struggle to either curb or cure it. Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia killed 1.54 million people in 2015, more than twice the number of deaths from the disease in 2000, according to documents posted on the WHO website last month. It replaced HIV/AIDS as No. 7 on the global health watchdog’s list of the 10 biggest causes of death worldwide…” (Kresge, 2/15).

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WHO Declares End To Yellow Fever Outbreak In Angola, DRC

U.N. News Centre: Innovative, coordinated response helps end yellow fever outbreak in Angola, DR Congo — U.N. agency
“With concerted response, Angola and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) have successfully controlled one of the world’s largest and most challenging outbreaks of yellow fever, the United Nations health agency announced. No new confirmed cases reported from both countries for the past six months…” (2/15).

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Editorials and Opinions

U.S. Must Maintain Leadership Role In Global Health, Development, 'Cement Its Legacy' With Efficient Investments

The Hill: Preventing global health crises requires modest American investment
Loyce Pace, president and executive director of the Global Health Council

“…Amidst questions of America’s future role in the world, it is important to recognize that the U.S. has demonstrated unparalleled moral, economic, and social leadership in global health and development. Whether driven by compassion or pride, reliable and targeted U.S. investments focused on the well-being of international citizens are an example of our nation’s longstanding commitment to the advancement of societies worldwide, including our own. Strategic investments that promote efficiencies, maximize resources, and maintain a U.S. leadership role in global health will ensure we close gaps on the world’s most persistent challenges and prevent future crises. We are incredibly close to achieving once-lofty goals in our lifetime. Rather than rolling back progress, the U.S. should cement its legacy through proven methods that amplify our impact” (2/15).

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Scientific Community Should Fill 'Gaps Left By Apathetic Leadership And Constrained Government Agencies' To Protect Public Health, Environment

Thomson Reuters Foundation: When it comes to our health, we have no time to waste
Ashish Jha, director of the Harvard Global Health Institute; Georges C. Benjamin, executive director of the American Public Health Association; and Ken Berlin, president and CEO of the Climate Reality Project

“…[P]olitical change cannot be allowed to slow action on climate change. … The impacts of the climate crisis can be perilous and even fatal. … Changing weather norms are already altering the transmission patterns of infectious diseases, resulting in unexpected outbreaks of malaria, dengue fever, cholera, tick-born encephalitis, and West Nile virus. Floods, which are increasing in regularity and severity, create more breeding grounds for disease-carrying insects. Unpredictable and inconsistent precipitation patterns and higher temperatures are also reducing crop yields, causing more widespread malnourishment and nutrition deficiencies. … The threat of extreme heat to public health should be obvious, but some public officials are slow to even recognize the dangers … Because of this, the scientific and research community bear a particular responsibility to fill the gaps left by apathetic leadership and constrained government agencies and make the best research, science, and solutions accessible to all. … As American researchers, scientists, public health professionals, and climate change advocates, we will continue the critical work of protecting public health and protecting the environment, doing all we can to ensure that science drives decision-making and policy” (2/16).

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From the Global Health Policy Community

'Inside Philanthropy' Article Examines Possible Funding Gaps Created By Mexico City Policy Reinstatement

Inside Philanthropy: Gag Reflex: Melinda Gates Isn’t the Only Funder Worried About the Mexico City Policy
Sue-Lynn Moses, global editor of Inside Philanthropy, discusses President Trump’s reinstatement and expansion of the Mexico City policy, its potential impact on foreign NGOs that work on sexual and reproductive health programs, and remarks made by Melinda Gates, co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, on the policy’s potential effects. Moses asks, “How much U.S. aid money might be affected by the Mexico City policy, and how might philanthropy make up the difference? These are urgent questions right now.” She concludes, “Some may argue that philanthropic organizations and private donors could step in to fill what will likely be a gaping hole left should the U.S. pull its funding. Surely, the pressure will be on for them to do so and many will do more. But after looking at the numbers, it’s clear the funding gap is way beyond what private donors could fill” (2/15).

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Public Investment, Innovation Critical To Addressing Climate Change, Agriculture, Food Security

Chicago Council on Global Affairs: A Food-Secure Future: Innovation In The Face Of Evolving Threats
As part of the Chicago Council’s blog series, A Food-Secure Future, Isabel DoCampo, research associate at the Chicago Council, discusses the importance of public investment and the role of R&D and innovation in addressing climate change, agriculture, and global food security challenges (2/15).

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New Issue Of 'Global Fund News Flash' Available Online

Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria: Global Fund News Flash
The latest issue of the Global Fund News Flash contains a blog post by Global Fund Executive Director Mark Dybul about the Lives and Livelihoods Fund, “an innovative mechanism to finance projects in health, agriculture, and infrastructure in Islamic Development Bank member countries through a combination of grants and concessional loans. This week, the Lives and Livelihoods Fund signed its first project — a US$32 million financing agreement to support the government of Senegal’s mission to eliminate malaria by the end of 2018…” (2/15).

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'Science Speaks' Reports On Findings Presented At 2017 Conference On Retroviruses And Opportunistic Infections

Center for Global Health Policy’s “Science Speaks”: CROI 2017: Science Speaks brings news from Seattle
Antigone Barton, senior editor and writer of “Science Speaks,” writes, “The 2017 Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections this week finds a growing research agenda informing and informed by science and strategy surrounding HIV as well as tuberculosis, hepatitis, and emerging infections that include Ebola and Zika. Science Speaks is here … through the week for reports of advances in improved treatment options, prevention progress, news on all three 90s, and more…” (2/10).

Center for Global Health Policy’s “Science Speaks”: CROI 2017: A story of scientific collaboration, and resistance to travel ban highlight benefits of cross-border research (Barton, 2/14).

Center for Global Health Policy’s “Science Speaks”: CROI 2017: With free treatment for citizens, but not for immigrants, Botswana sees progress, and evidence of why that progress has stalled (Barton, 2/14).

Center for Global Health Policy’s “Science Speaks”: CROI 2017: Study takes a look at real world impact of combination HIV prevention (Barton, 2/15).

Center for Global Health Policy’s “Science Speaks”: CROI 2017: Continuing HIV treatment for new mothers in maternal and child health programs improves outcomes (Lubinski, 2/15).

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From the U.S. Government

CDC's Global Rapid Response Team Addresses Global Health Emergencies

CDC’s “Our Global Voices”: Global Rapid Responders — Our Boots on the Ground Defense
Ashley Greiner, an emergency public health epidemiologist with the CDC’s Global Rapid Response Team (Global RRT), discusses the work of the Global RRT in addressing public health emergencies, as well as her experience responding to Hurricane Matthew in Haiti (2/15).

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