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Kaiser Daily Global Health Policy Report

In The News

International Community Must Look To Nations Outside Europe To Help Fill Family Planning Funding Gap Created By Mexico City Policy, Swedish Official Says

Devex: Europe alone cannot plug the family planning funding gap — Sweden’s Modéer
“The international family planning community needs to look beyond the ‘usual suspects’ of the Nordic countries when it comes to filling the funding gap left by the United States’ recent reimposition of the ‘global gag rule,’ a top Swedish development official told Devex. Ulrika Modéer, Sweden’s state secretary for international development, said it will also take more than actions by the European Union to make up for America’s cessation of family planning funding…” (Edwards, 6/9).

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WHO DG-Elect Tedros In U.S. To Meet With Federal Agencies, Partner Organizations, Key Funders

Intellectual Property Watch: WHO Director-Elect Tedros In U.S., Meeting With Funders, International Organizations, Governments
“World Health Organization Director-Elect Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus is touring the United States this week, visiting key funders of the WHO, partner international organizations, U.S. government agencies, and nongovernmental organizations, [as well as] a Canadian ministry…” (New, 6/12).

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Canada Releases New Foreign Aid Policy Focusing More On Gender Equality Programs

Devex: Canada’s new foreign aid policy puts focus on women, rights
“…Minister of International Development Marie-Claude Bibeau released the country’s long-awaited International Assistance Policy last Friday, a strategy that calls itself ‘feminist’ and represents a major shift of the country’s vision for international development onto the world’s most vulnerable and marginalized populations. Within five years, 15 percent of Canadian aid will be dedicated to gender equality programs, compared to two percent in 2015-2016, Bibeau said…” (Halais, 6/12).

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Food Aid For 7.8M People In Ethiopia Set To Run Out This Month; U.N. IOM Launches $60M Appeal For East, Horn Of Africa

Reuters: Ethiopia, humanitarian groups say food aid for 7.8 mln to run out
“Ethiopia will run out of emergency food aid for 7.8 million people hit by severe drought by the end of this month, the government and humanitarian groups said. … Donors, international aid groups, and the government say existing food aid for the current 7.8 million will run out as funds are critically short this year with Ethiopia receiving slightly more than half of the $930 million to meet requirements until July…” (Maasho, 6/10).

U.N. News Centre: U.N. migration agency launches $60 million appeal for drought-hit East, Horn of Africa
“The United Nations migration agency [Friday] appealed for some $60 million to aid an estimated 16 million people suffering from the worst drought in decades in East and Horn of Africa. … Through the appeal, IOM said that it intends to target two million of the most vulnerable drought-affected people through December of this year in Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, and Somalia…” (6/9).

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Conflict, Drought Primary Drivers Of Food Insecurity In Africa, Middle East, FAO Report Says

U.N. News Centre: Conflict and drought deepen food insecurity in Africa, Middle East — U.N. agency
“Protracted fighting and unrest are swelling the ranks of displaced and hungry in some parts of the world, even as large agricultural harvests in some regions are buoying global food supply conditions, according to a new report by the United Nations agriculture agency. ‘Civil conflict continues to be a main driver of food insecurity, having triggered famine conditions in South Sudan and put populations in Yemen and northern Nigeria at high risk of localized famine,’ said the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization on [Friday at the] release of its Crop Prospects and Food Situation report…” (6/9).

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Humanitarian Health Expert Paul Spiegel Discusses Fixing Response System In GHN Q&A

Global Health NOW: How to Fix the Broken Humanitarian System: A Q&A with Paul Spiegel
“Even as the world struggles with multiple crises that have forced tens of millions of people from their homes — a scale unseen since World War II — the humanitarian response system designed to help them is broken, says Paul Spiegel, author of an article in a Lancet series on humanitarian response that launched on Thursday [and director of the Hopkins Center for Humanitarian Health at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health]. … What does this reconfiguration look like? Stronger command and control of response, integration of displaced people into local economies and national health systems, and fewer organizations involved in response, says Spiegel in this GHN Q&A…” (Simpson, 6/9).

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Editorials and Opinions

Polio Eradication Possible With Sustained Commitment, Efforts

Fox News: Polio, Eliminated: As former CDC Directors we are optimistic that the complete eradication of the disease is close
Thomas Frieden, Jeffrey P. Koplan, and David Satcher, all former directors of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

“…When it comes to polio, each of us is convinced that the ultimate achievement — complete eradication of this terrible disease — is unquestionably close. Each of us is a personal witness to years of relentless work, driven by strong science, sturdy and diverse partnerships, dedicated and sometimes dangerous work on the front lines, and sheer determination, that has brought us to the brink of eradicating a disease once so feared and widespread it was one of the world’s leading threats to people’s health. … [A]n indisputable reason for the remarkable inroads against polio is the critical role Rotary International has played from the start, from initially proposing the goal to walking stride for stride with us in public health to defeat polio. … Thanks to widespread vaccination campaigns in more than a hundred countries, a disease that once paralyzed 1,000 children each day is now almost history. Anyone who has seen this crippling disease, as we have, feels the urgency to finish the job — to eliminate polio’s last, tenuous grip on our world … For while we’re tantalizingly close to eliminating polio worldwide, we’re not there yet…” (6/11).

Atlanta Journal-Constitution: Opinion: We can achieve world without polio
Ted Turner, founder of CNN and founder and chair of the United Nations Foundation

“…Leadership from the United States government has been essential to the fight against polio, as well as to many global health issues. To keep children around the world — and in the U.S. — safe and healthy, this leadership must continue. We have the tools and ability to stop polio; now we need to maintain the commitment to reach the finish line. … In addition to the millions of lives that have and will be saved, polio eradication will save money for overstretched health systems. … It will also allow countries and the global community to leverage the infrastructure that has been built for polio eradication to strengthen a wide variety of other health efforts around the world. … We have it in our power to ensure that future generations will live in a polio-free world. Working together, I know we can finish the job on polio. We can and must ensure that polio follows smallpox as the second human disease in history to be eradicated from our planet” (6/9).

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Congress Should Reject Administration's Proposed Cuts To International Affairs Budget

POLITICO: Why foreign aid is critical to U.S. national security
Michael Mullen, chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff from 2007 to 2011, and James Jones, former commandant of the Marine Corps and supreme allied commander-Europe from 2003 to 2006

“…[O]ur experiences … taught us that not all foreign crises are solved on the battlefield … That’s why we support a robust development budget to advance our national security objectives — and we are not alone in this belief. This week, we will join 14 other experienced former four-star generals and admirals in submitting testimony to Congress that military power alone cannot prevent radicalization, nor can it, by itself, prevent despair from turning to anger and increasing outbursts of violence and instability. … [D]evelopment aid is critical to America’s national security. … Foreign assistance should be respected — and budgeted — as an investment in the enhancement of stability in the world’s most vulnerable places … American security is advanced by the development of stable nations that are making progress on social development, economic growth, and good governance; by countries that enforce the rule of law and invest in the health and education of their own people. … Cutting the International Affairs budget will hurt our country’s ability to stop new conflicts from forming, and will place our interests, values, and the lives of our men and women in uniform at risk. Congress should reject the administration’s proposed cuts and instead fully fund the international affairs budget…” (6/12).

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U.S. Must Fund Tools To Help Prevent, Address Food Insecurity, Famine

Washington Post: Five myths about famine
Gayle Smith, president and chief executive of the ONE Campaign

“We are facing one of the worst humanitarian crises since World War II. As the looming threat and tragic reality of famine spread across South Sudan, northern Nigeria, Somalia, and Yemen, 20 million people are in urgent need of food and other assistance. But … there is widespread confusion about what famine is and what we can do to help. Myth no. one: Famine is caused by drought or overpopulation. … Myth no. two: To prevent famine, we need better ways to predict it. … Myth no. three: A country on the brink of famine is on the verge of a crisis. … Myth no. four: During famine, the greatest risk is starving to death. … Myth no. five: Famine relief and other aid enables corrupt officials and doesn’t help people in need. … President Trump, when meeting with the pope last month, promised $300 million in famine relief for Yemen, South Sudan, Somalia, and Nigeria. That was a good gesture, but the real statement is in his budget proposal … Without [disaster relief and famine prevention] tools, we risk losing our ability to prevent a scourge that can kill millions” (6/9).

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Proposed NIH Budget Cuts Threaten U.S. Medical Innovation, Research

STAT: Cutting the NIH budget is bad for health and business
Kenneth C. Anderson, president of the American Society of Hematology and a hematologic oncologist at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

“…Basic scientific research conducted at the NIH and through grants awarded to academic institutions creates the basis for the transformative medicines that industry brings to millions of patients … Compromising this support for the NIH puts at risk our ability to find solutions to the health problems that plague Americans, disrupts an important part of the economy, and impedes a future generation of scientists from entering the field of medical research. … There has never been a time of greater promise for the bench-to-bedside translation of basic advances and making science count for patients with improved capabilities for diagnosis, prognosis, and treatment. And while physicians will keep arguing about the finer points of medicine, the next time they prescribe a new medication that improves the lives of their patients and their families, all will agree that the NIH made it possible” (6/9).

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From the Global Health Policy Community

More Than 100 Individuals, Organizations Endorse MFAN Statement On Principles To Guide U.S. Foreign Assistance Review, Implementation

Modernizing Foreign Assistance Network: More Than 100 Endorsers Agree: Effectiveness Principles Should Guide Foreign Aid Reform
More than 100 individuals and organizations endorse the statement, which begins, “Reforms to U.S. foreign assistance should be conducted jointly by Congress and the administration — in consultation with the development community — and guided by these principles, a comprehensive review of U.S. efforts, and a coherent Global Development Strategy.” The statement includes an outline of the proposed structural requirements and principles of U.S. foreign assistance (6/9).

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Lancet Series Examines Health In Humanitarian Crises

The Lancet: Health in Humanitarian Crises
“Large-scale humanitarian crises are ongoing in Syria, Afghanistan, Central African Republic, DR Congo, Iraq, Libya, Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan, and Yemen, among others. This Lancet Series of four papers and accompanying Comments assesses the evidence base for health interventions in humanitarian crises and finds significant variations in the quantity and quality of evidence. It brings together lessons learned from recent failures in humanitarian crises to provide recommendations to improve a broken system. It calls for action to put the protection of humanitarian workers front and center, to align humanitarian interventions with development programs, to improve leadership and coordination, to ensure timely and robust health information, and to make interventions more efficient, effective, and sustainable” (6/8).

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Laurie Garrett Discusses Recent Developments In Global Health

Council on Foreign Relations’ “Garrett on Global Health”: Letter
In this letter, Laurie Garrett, CFR senior fellow for global health, discusses the WHO director general race and election results; the challenges and road ahead for the WHO; the threat of proposed U.S. budget cuts to global health; a report from the WHO secretariat on the global shortage of and access to medicines and vaccines; the Ebola outbreak and humanitarian situation in Congo; and other global health-related topics (6/9).

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Pulitzer Center Gender Lens Conference Panel Examines Public Health Initiatives Worldwide

Pulitzer Center: Gender Lens: Sustainable Solutions in Global Health
Cece Charendoff, an intern with the Pulitzer Center, describes a panel discussion that took place on June 3 at the Pulitzer Center’s Gender Lens Conference that examined “current public health initiatives and problems that face the world.” Charendoff notes, “The panelists included documentary photographer and Pulitzer grantee Allison Shelley, documentary filmmaker and Pulitzer grantee Rob Tinworth, Senior Program Officer on Sexual Health and Rights for the American Jewish World Service (AJWS) Caroline Kouassiaman, and Professor Jennifer Beard from the Boston University School of Public Health. Moderating the panel was Pulitzer Center’s Mellon/ACLS Public Fellow Rebecca Kaplan” (6/9).

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From the U.S. Government

CDC Partners With Rotary International In Polio Eradication Efforts, Other Public Health Initiatives

CDC’s “Our Global Voices”: Rotary and CDC — Partners in Polio and Beyond
W. William Schluter, director of CDC’s Global Immunization Division, discusses Rotary International’s efforts to eradicate polio through the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI), as well as partnerships between CDC and Rotary to address other public health issues, “such as the provision of basic health services and access to clean water and sanitation.” Schluter concludes, “We can continue to make strides in public health like reducing health disparities, eliminating and eradicating vaccine-preventable diseases, improving access to safe water, and so much more thanks to partners like Rotary International” (6/9).

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