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Global Fund Board Members Discuss New Funding Allocation Model Amid Some Concerns From TB Advocates

The board of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria began a two-day meeting in Geneva on Thursday, “with one topic high on the agenda: a new funding model,” Devex’s “Development Newswire” reports. “The board will tackle aspects of a new funding model, which, according to Global Fund Director of Communications Seth Faison, ‘will change the way the Global Fund has made grants for 10 years,'” the news service writes, adding that the model, according to the International HIV/AIDS Alliance, “will see the Global Fund dropping its ’round’ grant-making process and replacing it with a ‘more flexible’ system.” In addition, “an ‘iterative dialogue process’ is also reportedly being explored,” Devex reports. “The proposed reforms seem good for the fund and its beneficiaries … [b]ut some have expressed their concerns on the funding model under consideration, specifically on the ‘historical disease application’ approach,” the news service writes (Ravelo, 9/13). According to an article on the Stop TB Partnership website, the new approach “would cap the proportion of funding available to tuberculosis (TB) projects at 16 percent,” and the proposal, “which is based on the proportion of grants awarded to TB in the past, met with strong objections from the community of people working on TB worldwide” (9/13).

 

According to the Center for Global Health Policy’s “Science Speaks” blog, “advocates for tuberculosis detection, treatment and prevention have signed a response” to the proposal (Barton, 9/12). It “states that the proposed 16 percent cap would have hugely adverse effects on recent progress against the TB epidemic and would widen the global TB funding gap currently standing at more than $2 billion per year,” the Stop TB Partnership article says (9/13). “The limitations of that funding model also would incapacitate efforts to maintain basic levels of tuberculosis care, scale up HIV/TB interventions, extend early case detection to those in greatest need, and make better use of community-based responses, the response says,” according to “Science Speaks” (9/12). “The Stop TB Partnership is proposing other allotment methods, an increase in funding allocation for tuberculosis during this interim period and the creation of a special fund for MDR-TB commodities that ‘would cover the procurement and stockpiling of second-line drugs and increased access to new diagnostic tools,'” Devex adds (9/13).