The bill creates the position of â€œSpecial Coordinator for Food Securityâ€ to advise the President on international food security issues, authorizes funds for agriculture, rural development, and nutrition programs under the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961, and fosters collaboration between eligible countries and institutions of higher learning in order to improve agricultural productivity and alleviate hunger.
The Kaiser Family Foundation’s Policy Tracker provides a single reference point for the latest information on Congressional and Administrative action on global health, including the status of key legislation, policies and programs, government reports, hearings, events, and other resources. Links to supporting materials, such as full bill texts, Member statements, and Congressional committee information, are also provided. RSS feeds are available. A related Budget Tracker provides updated information throughout the budget and appropriations process.
National Science Foundation partners with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to address global agriculture challenges
The National Science Foundation (NSF) and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation have announced a $50 million initiative to provide grants for “science research projects that develop innovative approaches and technologies to boost agricultural productivity in developing countries.” The funding program is called BREAD (Basic Research to Enable Agricultural Development) and will be conducted over a 5-year period.
The State Department announced that U.S. Official Development Assistance (ODA) totaled $26.0 billion in 2008 including $4.4 billion for HIV/AIDS related efforts and another $4.4 billion towards humanitarian assistance.
From the report summary: “This report briefly discusses the legislation (State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs appropriation legislation) generally and then provides a short description of the various funding accounts as they appear in Division H, ‘Department of State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations Act, 2009,’ of the Omnibus Appropriations Act, 2009 (P.L. 111-8).”
The bill would authorize â€œexisting United States Government programs, implementing authorities, and organizationsâ€ to improve â€œhealth and other basic quality of life indicators for residents of slumsâ€ by providing for â€œaffordable housing and sustainable urban development in developing countriesâ€ including access to clean water and improved sanitation.
As part of the Omnibus Appropriations Act, the Department of State will contribute $50 million to the United Nations Population Fund in 2009.
In a statement on World Tuberculosis Day, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton listed the ways the U.S. is involved in addressing TB while also stating â€œthere is still much more to be doneâ€ and â€œthe State Department should continue and expand its commitment to reducing the global burden of TB.â€
The resolution calls on the President to continue efforts to address the threat of international terrorism and protect international security by reducing nuclear weapons. The savings that would result from this reduction should be directed to child health, food, and education programs in the worldâ€™s most need countries including $5 billion over five years for the â€œimplementation of integrated packages of high impact and low-cost health and nutrition interventions at the community levelâ€ and an additional $1.5 billion annually over five years â€œtargeted at reducing the incidence of child hunger and increasing child nutrition and educational opportunitiesâ€ through Food for Peace and the George McGovern-Robert Dole International Food for education and Child Nutrition Program.
Co-chair of the President’s Council of Advisers on Science and Technology supports increased U.S. involvement in addressing global health issues
During an interview, Dr. Harold Varmus, Co-chair of the Presidentâ€™s Council of Advisers on Science and Technology stated that the U.S. should increase its role in addressing health issues in developing countries. He stated that he would ask President Obama to endorse a recent Institute of Medicine (IOM) report that calls on the U.S. to double its funding for global health by 2012.
The U.S. government sent representatives from 10 different agencies to the World Water Forum in Istanbul, Turkey in order to discuss global water and sanitation issues.