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Administration officials blog about global health issues during UNGA

Administration officials provided updates from the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), the Global Health Initiative (GHI), water and sanitation, malaria, nutrition, and efforts to improve the health of children.

Secretary Clinton announces international alliance on reproductive, maternal and newborn health

During remarks at U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon’s Millennium Development Goals’ maternal and child health event, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton announced a five-year joint effort between the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation “to increase access to family planning and reduce maternal and neonatal deaths in South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa.”

NIH releases “Biennial Report of the Director, National Institutes of Health, Fiscal Years 2008 & 2009″

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) released the “Biennial Report of the Director, National Institutes of Health, Fiscal Years 2008 & 2009” providing an overview of NIH research activities and “an assessment of the state of biomedical and behavioral research organized by disease category, investigative approach, and resource.”

Admiral Ziemer outlines the Administration’s goals for development at Lower Mekong Initiative Infectious Disease Conference

During remarks at the Lower Mekong Initiative Infectious Disease Conference the President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI) Coordinator Admiral Timothy Ziemer outlined the Administration’s four goals for development: committing to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), ensuring country ownership, finding new ways to innovate, and efficiency in achieving results. Admiral Ziemer also described the guiding principles of the Global Health Initiative (GHI): a focus on women’s health; increased collaboration and coordination within the U.S. government; shared responsibility of the international community; country ownership; sustainability; and monitoring, evaluation, research, learning, and innovation. Admiral Ziemer concluded by highlighting U.S. commitments to improve health in the Lower Mekong region.

House Appropriations Subcommittee completes markup of State and Foreign Operations Appropriations Bill

The House Committee on Appropriations, Subcommittee on State and Foreign Operations completed its markup of the FY 2011 State and Foreign Operations appropriations bill with the following recommendations:

Total Funding for State & Foreign Operations: $52.656 billion ($4 billion below the President’s FY11 request; $3.89 billion above the FY10 enacted level)

Global Health and Child Survival Account (GHCS): $8.25 billion ($263 million below the President’s request; $471 million above the FY10 enacted level) which includes $2.725 billion for USAID and $5.525 billion for the State Department. Funding for specific areas is as follows:
– HIV/AIDS activities and the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria: $5.875 billion
– HIV/AIDS: $5.05 billion

- Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria contribution: $825 million
– Malaria: $615 million

- Family Planning and Reproductive Health: $735 million which includes funding from multiple accounts and provides $60 million to the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA)

Millennium Challenge Corporation: $1.105 billion ($174.7 million below the President’s FY11 request; equal to the FY10 enacted level)

NIH announces “10 International Centers of Excellence for Malaria Research”

The National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), announced approximately $14 million in funding for the first-year of a seven year award to establish 10 International Centers of Excellence for Malaria Research (ICEMRs) in parts of Africa, Asia, the Pacific Islands, and Latin America – regions where malaria is endemic and that include some of the focus countries of the President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI). According to the press release, the ICEMRs are expected to help: improve the design and evaluation of new interventions and control strategies, build infrastructure in endemic regions, and expand training and research capacity worldwide.

H.R. 5783 – Investing in Our Future Act of 2010

The proposed bill would impose a 0.005% tax on the value of the currency (if greater than $10,000 USD) acquired in a currency exchange transaction. The revenue generated by this tax would be directed to three new trust funds established at the Department of the Treasure: 20% would be directed to a “Child Care Assistance Trust Fund,” 40% to a “Multilateral Global Health Trust Fund,” and 40% to a “Global Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation Trust Fund.” The Secretary of State would have authority to provide grants from the Multilateral Global Health Trust Fund to entities such as the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria and other multilateral organizations that meet specific criteria outlined in the bill. The bill also states that funding for the multilateral organizations must be in addition to and not replacing existing funding and should be used for the purposes of “addressing HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria, maternal mortality, family planning, neglected diseases, and other health issues affecting developing countries.”

Congressional letter urges President Obama to support the Global Fund

In a letter to President Obama, 100 members of Congress joined Representative Barbara Lee (D-CA, 9th) to urge the Obama Administration “to make a three-year commitment to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria of no less than $6 billion for fiscal years 2012, 2013, and 2014, in addition to any proposed bilateral funding.”

S. 3676 – Department of State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations Bill, 2011

The Senate Committee on Appropriations approved by a vote of 18-12 the FY 2011 State and Foreign Operations appropriations bill with the following recommendations:

Total Funding for State & Foreign Operations: $54.06 billion ($2.6 billion below the President’s FY11 request; $5.3 billion above the FY10 enacted level)

Global Health and Child Survival Account (GHCS): $8.239 billion ($274 million below the President’s request; $460 million above the FY10 enacted level) with funding for specific areas is as follows:
– HIV/AIDS activities and the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria: $5.85 billion
– HIV/AIDS: $5.05 billion

- Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria contribution: $800 million
– Malaria: $635.5 million

- Tuberculosis: $230 million

- Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs): $100 million

- Child Survival and Maternal Health: $641 million

- Nutrition: $100 million

- Family Planning and Reproductive Health: $700 million which includes funding from multiple accounts and provides $55 million to the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA)

Millennium Challenge Corporation: $1.105 billion ($174.7 million below the President’s FY11 request; equal to the FY10 enacted level)

Feed the Future: $1.3 billion ($344 million below the President’s FY11 request)

“Global Gag” Rule Amendment:The Committee approved by a vote of 19-11 an amendment to the appropriations bill introduced by Senator Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ) that would codify into law President Obama’s decision to rescind the “global gag” rule (otherwise known as the Mexico City Policy), which prevented the U.S. from providing foreign assistance for family planning purposes to any organization that performed or promoted legal abortion.

S. 589 – Global Service Fellowship Program Act of 2009

The bill directs the Administrator of USAID to establish an “Office of Volunteers for Prosperity” that will fund and oversee a fellowship program aimed at creating volunteering opportunities abroad. Fellowships would be award to individuals working on projects that address a variety of challenges facing developing countries including: “reducing child mortality and improving maternal health, providing medical and dental health care and prevention, and combating HIV/AIDS, malaria, and other infectious diseases.” The bill authorizes $15 million per year from 2010 to 2012.