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GAO releases report on USAID's ability to target international food assistance to vulnerable populations

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a report titled “International Food Assistance: Improved Targeting Would Help Enable USAID to Reach Vulnerable Groups,” which “(1) describe[s] in-country factors that USAID and its implementing partners face in targeting vulnerable groups, and (2) examine[s] the extent to which USAID’s targeting process supports effective targeting.”

Based on its analysis, the GAO recommended “that the Administrator of USAID improve USAID’s targeting of specialized food products to vulnerable groups by (1) issuing, as appropriate, improved interim guidance to assist implementing partners in deciding whether and how to target specialized food products; and (2) establishing and reporting program-specific indicators related to targeted vulnerable groups, to assess effectiveness in reaching such groups.”

GAO releases report on World Food Program's ability to deliver and monitor food assistance in high-risk areas

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a report titled “World Food Program: Stronger Controls Needed in High-Risk Areas” examining the World Food Program’s (WFP) capabilities related to the delivery and monitoring of food assistance particularly in high-risk areas.

GAO releases report on PEPFAR evaluation activities

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a report titled “President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief: Agencies Can Enhance Evaluation Quality, Planning, and Dissemination,” which details its review of “PEPFAR evaluation activities, . . . the extent to which evaluation findings, conclusions, and recommendations were supported, and . . . the extent to which PEPFAR policies and procedures adhere to established general evaluation principles.”

Based on its analysis, the GAO recommended “that State work with CDC and USAID to (1) improve adherence to common evaluation standards, (2) develop PEPFAR evaluation plans, (3) provide guidance for assessing and documenting evaluators’ independence and qualifications, and (4) increase online accessibility of evaluation results.”

GAO releases report on drug quality in global health programs

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a report titled “Ensuring Drug Quality in Global Health Programs”, which “examined (1) the regulatory and policy requirements intended to ensure the quality of drugs procured with U.S. aid funds and (2) the systems in place to monitor drug quality in supply chains used by programs receiving U.S. foreign aid funds.” The GAO did not make any recommendations in this report.

GAO releases report on USAID and USDA nonemergency food aid programs

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a report titled “U.S. Nonemergency Food Aid Programs Have Similar Objectives but Some Planning Helps Limit Overlap,” which examines the extent to which the nonemergency food aid programs implemented by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) pursue similar objectives.

GAO Report – Global Food Security: U.S. Agencies Progressing on Governmentwide Strategy, but Approach Faces Several Vulnerabilities

For this report, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) “examined (1) the types and funding of food security programs and activities of relevant U.S. government agencies; and (2) progress in developing an integrated U.S. governmentwide strategy to address global food insecurity as well as potential vulnerabilities of that strategy.”

Based on its analysis, the GAO provided two recommendations to the Secretary of State to improve U.S. global food security efforts: “(1) develop an operational definition of food security that is accepted by all U.S. agencies, establish a methodology for consistently reporting comprehensive data across agencies, and periodically inventory agencies’ food security-related programs and funding; and (2) collaborate with other agency heads to finalize a governmentwide strategy that delineates measures to mitigate the risks associated with the host country-led approach.”

GAO Testimony – Global Food Security: Progress toward a U.S. Governmentwide Strategy Is Under Way, but Approach Has Several Vulnerabilities

Representatives from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) testified on global food security before the House Committee on Appropriations, Subcommittee on Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies. The testimony addressed “(1) the types and funding levels of food security programs and activities of relevant U.S. government agencies and (2) progress in developing an integrated U.S. governmentwide strategy to address global food insecurity and the strategy’s potential vulnerabilities,” and was based on a new GAO report that was released at the hearing.

GAO announces new resource on disaster assistance

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) announced a new web-based resource compiling its work on the U.S. government’s domestic and international disaster assistance efforts. The GAO created the resource in response to U.S. government efforts to assist Haiti after the January 12, 2010 earthquake and highlights “the need to coordinate with host governments and local organizations, and establish monitoring procedures to ensure accountability.”

GAO Report – President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief: Efforts to Align Programs with Partner Countries’ HIV/AIDS Strategies and Promote Partner Country Ownership

This U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) report, which is in response to a directive in the 2008 reauthorization of the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), “(1) examines alignment of PEPFAR programs with partner countries’ HIV/AIDS strategies and (2) describes several challenges related to alignment or promotion of country ownership.” The GAO found that, while PEPFAR activities generally align with partner country HIV/AIDS activities, several challenges exist. Based on its findings, the GAO recommended – and the Office of the Global AIDS Coordinator (OGAC) concurred – “that the Secretary of State direct OGAC to develop and disseminate a methodology for establishing baseline measures of country ownership prior to implementing partnership frameworks.”

GAO Report – U.S. Water and Sanitation Aid: Millions of Beneficiaries Reported in Developing Countries, but Department of State Needs to Strengthen Strategic Approach

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) conducted an analysis of efforts by the Department of State (State) and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) to provide water and sanitation assistance to developing countries based on requirements included in the Paul Simon Water for the Poor Act of 2005. Specifically, this GAO report “(1) describes USAID’s accomplishments; (2) describes USAID’s obligations of funds for water and sanitation assistance in fiscal years 2006-2009; (3) assesses the Department of State’s (State) development of a U.S. water and sanitation strategy; and (4) examines State’s designation of high-priority countries.” Based on this analysis, GAO provided two recommendations to enable the State Department to fulfill requirements outlined in the Water for the Poor Act: “(1) ensure that the strategy for U.S. water and sanitation assistance addresses all requirements, including goals and benchmarks, and (2) clearly identify, in its mandated reports, the basis for its designations of high-priority countries.”