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America’s approach to improving global health has proven extremely effective, with perhaps no greater example than strategic U.S. investments to fight AIDS, tuberculosis (TB) and malaria. With bipartisan support, the public-private partnership of the Global Fund works closely with U.S. bilateral programs, including the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), the President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI), and the U.S. Agency for International Development’s (USAID) TB program, to reach the global targets for AIDS, TB and malaria by 2030.
The U.S. government’s investment in the Global Fund is a vital element of our country’s response to the three diseases, leveraging bilateral resources and expanding the geographic reach of programs. The Global Fund and U.S. bilateral programs are interconnected, collaborating on a daily basis to align program investments, resolve implementation bottlenecks and streamline co-investment to maximize efficiency and impact. These collaborative efforts to align resources and create synergies have allowed for dramatic scale up of innovative programs and saved millions of lives.
The Global Fund and PEPFAR
Established by President George W. Bush in 2003, PEPFAR works in partnership with the Global Fund to deliver lifesaving treatment and drive down the rate of new HIV infections. The Global Fund ensures a country-driven HIV/AIDS response by working closely with PEPFAR teams and governments to jointly plan program alignment and support scale up. PEPFAR provides direct, on-the-ground technical support to ensure quality of services while leveraging Global Fund resources to expand the geographic reach of HIV treatment and prevention. PEPFAR teams are active participants in the development of new Global Fund funding requests and invite the Global Fund to participate in its own country operational planning process so that resources are aligned, strategically focused, and responsive to data. Additionally, through PEPFAR, the U.S. government holds a permanent seat as a member of the Global Fund’s Board.
The partnership between PEPFAR and the Global Fund is showing impressive results. As of January 2017, PEPFAR reported that new HIV infection rates in Malawi and Zimbabwe have declined by 76 percent and 67 percent, respectively, and cited the Global Fund as responsible for a significant share of this progress.
As PEPFAR highlighted in its most recent annual report to Congress, “PEPFAR has saved millions of lives, but we have not done it alone … PEPFAR works with the Global Fund, to which we are the largest donor, to maximize our joint investments. The increased partnership between PEPFAR and the Global Fund improves the impact of our investments through more strategic use of resources to support programs that are impactful and sustainable.”
The Global Fund and PMI
Launched in 2005 by President Bush and expanded by President Barack Obama, PMI is a historic U.S. government effort to reduce malaria deaths and substantially decrease malaria illness, toward the long-term goal of elimination. PMI has sought from the very beginning to complement the Global Fund. Currently, all 19 PMI focus countries receive substantial Global Fund support, allowing PMI to strategically assess available resources and fulfill unmet needs.
PMI field teams work with national malaria control programs to provide technical support, thereby facilitating implementation of Global Fund grants. In addition to improving the quality and coverage of key malaria control interventions, PMI’s technical assistance includes fostering communication among key stakeholders, keeping the Global Fund up-to-date on critical developments, and assisting with reporting progress on Global Fund-supported grants and programs.
PMI collaborates with the Global Fund on malaria interventions, such as procuring and distributing millions of insecticide-treated nets in focus countries. Together, the U.S. government and the Global Fund provide three-quarters of all funding for global malaria programs and policies.
The Global Fund and USAID’s TB program
The Global Fund is the world’s largest funder of TB care and treatment. To maximize the impact of U.S. and Global Fund investments in TB, USAID provides technical assistance, leveraging the Global Fund’s resources in countries with the greatest disease burden.
USAID achieves results by strengthening national TB programs and improving both the quality and reach of TB services. This is achieved through strategic efforts to identify and remedy programmatic challenges and opportunities, as well as ensure that Global Fund investments are implemented for maximum benefit in tackling TB.
In addition, USAID worked with national TB programs, private sector companies and other key partners in 2015 to introduce bedaquiline, a new, lifesaving drug that treats multi-drug resistant TB (MDR-TB) in 35 countries with active Global Fund grants, further addressing the threat of TB.
For more information about how the Global Fund works with U.S. bilateral programs, please visit www.theglobalfight.org.