Global Fund announces new strategy, curtails new programing; General Manager role added

The Board of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria announced adoption of a new strategy “which commits the institution to work with implementing countries and partner organizations to sustain and accelerate gains in the fight against the pandemics. The Global Fund aspires to contribute substantially to international goals by saving 10 million lives and preventing 140-180 million new infections from AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria from 2012 to 2016.” The Board also approved a Consolidated Transformation Plan for the organization “to improve its risk management, fiduciary controls and governance. The plan will refocus staff and resources on grant management in high-risk countries; reform the way the Global Fund approves grants by moving towards a more interactive process with applicants and partners and strengthen the Board’s governance processes.”

Global Fund Board Chair Simon Bland commented, “The five-year strategy and transformation plan adopted at the meeting together commit the Global Fund to shift to a new funding model that focuses on investing strategically in countries, populations and interventions with high potential for impact and strong value for money. It will provide its funding in a more proactive, flexible and predictable way. It will better manage risk and it will work more actively with countries and partners to facilitate grant implementation success. In doing so, I believe the Global Fund will shift from an institution that has successfully provided emergency funding to allow countries to cope with the runaway pandemics, to become a sustainable, efficient funder of the global efforts to control them and eventually win the battle against AIDS, TB and malaria.”

The Global Fund said it has US$4 billion held at its trustee account to ensure disbursements on all existing grants, and that, based on pledges from donors, the Fund has or expects to receive resources enabling the institution to sign grants for existing approved programs with a value of more than US$10 billion for the period 2011 to 2013.

However, the Global Fund noted that “a revised resource forecast presented to the Board showed that substantial budget challenges in some donor countries, compounded by low interest rates have significantly affected the resources available for new grant funding. As a result, the Global Fund will only be able to finance essential services for on-going programs that come to their conclusion before 2014 by making savings in the existing grant portfolio. The Global Fund Board adopted such measures, including further limiting funding to some middle-income countries.”

The Board “urgently requested donors to consider measures to increase and accelerate funding, and implementing country governments, especially those from middle-income countries, to increase funding for the three diseases and related health investments.” During this period, the Global Fund “will roll out a new way for countries to apply for funding which will reduce the amount of investments a country puts into developing a proposal and engages with partners and implementers.”

Recognizing that the substantial changes that lie ahead will necessitate considerable focus on internal management and administration, the Board decided to appoint a General Manager to work alongside the Executive Director. The General Manager and a potential support team will help to take the organization through its transformation phase over the next twelve months. The strategy, which is the result of more than a year’s discussions and consultations with more than 700 individuals, groups and organizations, will also strengthen the Global Fund’s focus on “most-at-risk” populations and striving to protect human rights through its funding of programs.

Separately, the Global Fund said it warmly welcomed the announcement by Germany to release EUR 100 million as part of its contribution for 2011. Germany had previously released EUR 100 million in August 2011 and the latest payment fulfils its full pledge of EUR 200 million for the year. Professor Michel Kazatchkine, the Global Fund’s Executive Director, said, “Germany has been a strong supporter of the Global Fund and has taken a lead in the work to strengthen the Global Fund’s oversight of its grants. We appreciate the trust and confidence Germany has shown in our efforts to transform the Global Fund into a highly efficient channel for financing a sustainable, long-term response to the three diseases.” Germany is described as the fourth largest donor to the Global Fund, having pledged over EUR 1.5 billion since 2002. This includes EUR 600 million for the period 2011-13, in yearly installments of EUR 200 million each. Germany has conditioned next year’s contribution of EUR 200 million on the implementation of the Global Fund’s Consolidated Transformation Plan.

ACIP: Immunization of Health-Care Personnel – November 2011

   Immunization of Health-Care Personnel: Recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP)
This report updates the previously published summary of recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) and the Hospital Infection Control Practices Advisory Committee (HICPAC) for vaccinating health-care personnel (HCP) in the United States. This report summarizes all current ACIP recommendations for vaccination of HCP and does not contain any new recommendations or policies. The recommendations provided in this report apply, but are not limited, to HCP in acute-care hospitals; long-term–care facilities (e.g., nursing homes and skilled nursing facilities); physician’s offices; rehabilitation centers; urgent care centers, and outpatient clinics as well as to persons who provide home health care and emergency medical services.

November 25, 2011 / Vol. 60 / No. RR–7  – November 2011

UNICEF and Save the Children UK issue report – Progress in Child Well-being

UNICEF and Save the Children UK issued a report – Progress in Child Well-being: Building On What Works – “showing that children’s well-being has improved dramatically thanks to increased political will globally, supportive policies and well-focused programmes and resources, but that the gains will be sustained only if the most disadvantaged and vulnerable children are reached The report “draws on a more in-depth study commissioned by UNICEF and Save the Children UK, and authored by the Overseas Development Institute.” The report “points to a vastly improved child mortality rate.   Compared to 1990, 12,000 fewer children under five die every day in 2010.  Between 1990 and 2008, stunting due to malnutrition declined in developing countries from 40 per cent to 29 per cent. Impressive gains have also been seen in education. In the decade between 1999 and 2009, the number of children enrolled in pre-primary education jumped almost 40 per cent from 113 million to 157 million; 58 million additional children enrolled in primary school; and the number of primary-aged children out of school decreased by 39 million.”

Weekly Epidemiological Record (WER) for 25 November 2011

The Weekly Epidemiological Record (WER) for 25 November 2011, vol. 86, 48 (pp 541–556) includes: African Programme for Onchocerciasis Control: meeting of national task forces, September 2011; Progress introducing rotavirus vaccine into Latin America and the Caribbean, 2006–2010; Monthly report on dracunculiasis cases, January–September 2011

Twitter Watch to 27 November 2011

Twitter Watch
A selection of items of interest from a variety of twitter feeds associated with immunization, vaccines and global public health. This capture is highly selective and by no means intended to be exhaustive.

GAVIAlliance GAVI Alliance
With #GAVI support, #Tanzania plans to introduce the #rotavirus #vaccine by 2013-

Eurovaccine ECDC Eurovaccine
EUROVACCINE 2011: web-based interactive conference on 5 December; register for the webcast
25 Nov

GAVIAlliance GAVI Alliance
The much awaited pentavalent #vaccine has arrived in India. @GAVIAlliance is supplying the #vaccine to India for free-
24 Nov

globalfundnews The Global Fund
Global Fund Welcomes Germany’s Contribution for 2011…
24 Nov

Eurovaccine ECDC Eurovaccine
Over 1000 new measles cases added since the previous reporting; total number of cases in 2011: 30200. #EU, EEA, EFTA
24 Nov

cdchep CDC Hepatitis
Just posted! @CDCMMWR: ACIP recommendations for immunization of healthcare personnel CE available! #Hepatitis #HBV
23 Nov

globalfundnews The Global Fund
The Global Fund adopts new strategy to save 10 million lives by 2016…
23 Nov

gatesfoundation Gates Foundation
Top 10 Myths About #HIV Vaccine Research: #WorldAIDSDay
21 Nov