KFF Daily Global Health Policy Report

In The News

WHO Expresses Concern As COVID-19 Cases Escalate Rapidly Worldwide; U.N. Agencies Respond In Various Ways

CNBC: The coronavirus outbreak is a ‘real threat to everyone on the planet,’ WHO official says
“World Health Organization officials are ‘deeply concerned’ about the ‘rapid escalation and global spread’ of the coronavirus outbreak, saying global infections will eclipse 1 million with 50,000 deaths in a few days…” (Higgins-Dunn et al., 4/1).

Los Angeles Times: WHO struggles against coronavirus and a divided world testing its authority
“…The WHO risks becoming a bystander in the unfolding crisis as countries make unilateral decisions about emergency measures, treatment, and distribution of medical resources. … The fractious climate could result in renewed disease outbreaks and inequities, experts say, especially if an eventual vaccine leads to a free-for-all in which nations hoard supplies. It also raises questions about how the WHO, in an increasingly divided world, could handle an even swifter and more deadly virus, such as what scientists term as a Disease X…” (Pierson, 4/2).

POLITICO: U.N. calls for global response to coronavirus pandemic
“The United Nations on Tuesday called for the launch of a ‘large-scale, coordinated, and comprehensive multilateral response’ to the coronavirus pandemic, an ambitious proposal that would amount to at least 10 percent of global gross domestic product…” (Forgey, 4/1).

Reuters: U.N. nuclear agency sending coronavirus testing gear to 40 countries
“The U.N. atomic agency is sending an initial batch of equipment to about 40 countries with which they will be able to perform a standard test for the coronavirus involving a technique derived from nuclear science, it said on Wednesday…” (Murphy, 4/1).

U.N. News: WHO concerned over rapid escalation in COVID-19 spread as caseload approaches one million
“…Although Africa, Central America, and South America have reported relatively lower numbers of cases, [WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus] warned that the disease could have ‘serious social, economic, and political consequences’ in these regions…” (4/1).

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G20 Prepares COVID-19 Rescue Package For Africa As Refugee Camps Worldwide Feel Pandemic's Impacts

AFRICA

Global Health NOW: In COVID-19, the Africa CDC Faces Its Greatest Challenge (Simpson, 3/31).

Los Angeles Times: This African city has endured war and Ebola. Now comes coronavirus (Yeung, 4/1).

POLITICO: G-20 prepares coronavirus rescue package for Africa (Marks, 4/1).

Reuters: Somali doctor, veteran of many battles, girds for war with coronavirus (Sheikh, 4/1).

Thomson Reuters Foundation: Ugandan rights groups demand release of LGBT+ people jailed over coronavirus (McCool, 4/1).

U.N. News: Nigeria: U.N. and partners acting to avert coronavirus spread in displacement camps (4/1).

Washington Post: Borders are closing to fight the coronavirus. Now this village is split in two (Paquette, 4/1).

ASIA

Devex: In Rohingya camps, COVID-19 challenges humanitarian effort to ‘do no harm’ (Rogers/Lieberman, 4/2).

New Yorker: How COVID-19 Will Hit India (Chotiner, 4/1).

Reuters: Singapore’s coronavirus struggle shows colossal task of global containment (Geddie et al., 4/2).

Reuters: China and Australia target Pacific with coronavirus aid (Needham, 4/1).

EUROPE

AP: Mass testing, empty ICUs: Germany scores early against virus (Jordans, 4/1).

Reuters: Greece quarantines camp after migrants test coronavirus positive (Maltezou et al., 4/2).

LATIN AMERICA AND CARIBBEAN

DW: Coronavirus: Brazil is headed toward a ‘perfect storm’ (Christofaro, 4/1).

New York Times: Bolsonaro, Isolated and Defiant, Dismisses Coronavirus Threat to Brazil (Londoño et al., 4/1).

U.N. News: Protecting the Caribbean’s most vulnerable people in the face of COVID-19: A U.N. Resident Coordinator blog (4/1).

MIDDLE EAST

AP: Extremists see global chaos from virus as an opportunity (Anna, 4/2).

France 24: War-torn Yemen ‘not equipped’ for potential coronavirus outbreak (4/1).

Reuters: Packed with refugees, Palestinian camps face grave threat if coronavirus spreads (Ganeyeh et al., 4/2).

U.N. News: Coronavirus pandemic threatens to plunge millions in Arab region into poverty and food insecurity (4/1).

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Developing Countries, Indigenous Populations, Refugees At Risk Of Greatest Impacts From COVID-19 Pandemic

Bloomberg: Poorer Countries Are Least Prepared for Pandemic Lockdowns (Einhorn et al., 4/2).

DW: Developing countries brace for bigger blow than 2008 crisis (Pandey, 4/2).

SciDev.Net: Coronavirus ‘could devastate’ indigenous communities (Wight, 4/1).

U.N. News: Low-skilled workers, developing countries at risk of steep economic decline as coronavirus advances (4/1).

U.N. News: COVID-19: International community must step up to prevent pandemic from devastating vulnerable on the run (4/1).

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Media Outlets Examine Coronavirus Mortality Rates In Various Countries, Regions

AP: U.N.: 95% of Europe’s virus dead over 60 but young not immune
“More than 95% of those who have died of coronavirus in Europe have been over 60 but young people should not be complacent, the head of the World Health Organization’s office in Europe said Thursday…” (Keaten, 4/2).

The Hill: New study finds coronavirus death rate significantly better than previously estimated
“…The study published Monday in The Lancet Infectious Diseases medical journal estimates that about 0.66 percent of patients who become infected with the virus will die. When undetected infections aren’t taken into account, researchers found the coronavirus death rate was 1.38 percent…” (Guzman, 4/1).

Vox: The stark differences in countries’ coronavirus death rates, explained
“…Figuring out what is driving these disparate numbers reveals differences not just in population demographics but also in health care capacity and government response. Understanding [case fatality rates (CFRs)] might also help us slow deaths around the world — especially for the most vulnerable countries and individuals…” (Courage, 4/1).

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Global Powers Shifting As Nations Turn Inward To Mitigate COVID-19; U.S. Accepts Medical Equipment Shipment From Russian; China Concealed Extent Of Coronavirus Outbreak, U.S. Intelligence Report Says

Bloomberg: China Concealed Extent of Virus Outbreak, U.S. Intelligence Says
“China has concealed the extent of the coronavirus outbreak in its country, under-reporting both total cases and deaths it’s suffered from the disease, the U.S. intelligence community concluded in a classified report to the White House, according to three U.S. officials…” (Wadhams/Jacobs, 4/1).

Foreign Policy: Russia Scores Pandemic Propaganda Triumph With Medical Delivery to U.S.
“As top American officials bash the Russian government for spreading disinformation on the coronavirus pandemic, U.S. President Donald Trump is accepting a supply of medical equipment from Moscow. … Trump himself welcomed the move as his administration works to scale up the amount of medical supplies being delivered to overburdened U.S. hospitals across the country, which face a dire shortage of medical supplies. … But the delivery also represents a major optics win for Moscow as the worldwide delivery of medical supplies from competing powers takes on an increasingly geopolitical edge. The United States appears to have shed its traditional role of world leader in a global crisis, critics say, instead redirecting its focus on domestic needs…” (Mackinnon/Gramer, 4/1).

Foreign Policy: Ukraine to World: This Is Not the Time to Go Wobbly on Sanctions
“Facing a global sanctions backlash because of coronavirus concerns, Ukraine has mounted a lone appeal to the United Nations leadership to maintain economic pressure on Russia and other international scofflaws to comply with international law, saying any backtracking on sanctions at this moment would amount to ‘appeasement.’ … The move comes as an unlikely but growing coalition of forces — including China, Russia, Iran, North Korea, Democratic lawmakers in the United States, relief agencies, and the U.N. leadership — have advocated an easing of measures in response to the coronavirus…” (Lynch, 4/1).

The Hill: China sees chance to expand global influence amid pandemic
“China is seeking to expand its global influence during the coronavirus pandemic by painting itself as a powerful benefactor at a time when Beijing is facing accusations of concealing information about the initial outbreak. Beijing is touting its shipments of medical supplies to more than 100 countries, including the U.S., as a way to present itself as a global leader providing aid to those in need. But U.S. experts argue that projection is a mirage. Not only is China largely charging for the supplies, they said, it also comes with political strings attached…” (Beavers, 4/2).

PRI: Is coronavirus reshuffling the global power deck?
“The COVID-19 outbreak has set in motion a reshuffling of global powers. Experts say international cooperation is critical to combat COVID-19. But as more and more countries close their borders, global leadership is also retreating behind national walls. … Even at the level of the European Union, solidarity is lacking. China and Russia have stepped in to fill the void by sending supplies and medical staff to hotspots in Europe, as European partners fail to do so. And as China proactively responds to calls for help — and pads its soft power around the world — the U.S. has continued to follow President Donald Trump’s flagship policy of ‘America First’…” (Ekmanis, 4/1).

Additional coverage of Chinese and Russian actions during the COVID-19 pandemic is available from Foreign Policy, The Hill, POLITICO, and Washington Post.

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U.S. Experts Predict Up To 200K American Deaths If Federal Social Distancing Guidance Followed; Responses Remain Disjointed Across Country

Science: The United States leads in coronavirus cases, but not pandemic response
“…Trump announced on 29 March that federal recommendations to practice physical distancing would re­main in place at least through the end of April, dropping his much-criticized push for a faster return to business as usual. In the meantime, officials across the nation are scrambling to find enough ventilators, protective gear, and supplies for hospitals overwhelmed with COVID-19 patients — or about to be. Many state governors ratcheted up restrictions intended to slow the pandemic, imposing stay-at-home orders that some said could last into June. Despite such actions, the U.S. pandemic response remains a work in progress — fragmented, chaotic, and plagued by con­tradictory messaging from political lead­ers. … [T]he question now is whether the United States — a patchwork of more than 50 state and territorial govern­ments marked by political polarization and a history of fierce resistance to centralized authority — can follow through…” (4/1).

Vox: Trump’s coronavirus death toll estimate exposes his failure
“President Donald Trump revealed a grim projection in the coronavirus pandemic on Tuesday: Even with the social distancing the U.S. is doing now, 100,000 to 200,000 Americans will likely die as a result of the ongoing outbreak. ‘When you see 100,000 people, that’s a minimum number,’ Trump said. It’s a horrifying figure. That’s more people than ever died in a single year from HIV/AIDS, drug overdoses, gun violence, or car crashes in the U.S.. It’s more than American casualties during the entire Vietnam War. But it’s also a horrifying number, in part, because much of it was likely preventable. If the U.S. — including the Trump administration — had better prepared for pandemics, the country likely could have avoided ever talking about 100,000 to 200,000 deaths…” (Lopez, 4/1).

Washington Post: Decoding the graphs that may have saved millions of American lives
“…Tuesday’s briefing by the White House coronavirus task force marked the end of the initial 15-day period in which it advocated strong measures aimed at stopping the spread of the virus. Members of the task force, particularly Deborah Birx, promised a review of the available data once the initial period had ended and a reconsideration of the government’s recommendations. At Tuesday’s briefing, she walked through the data in five often alarming graphs, presumably ones similar to what were presented to Trump — and which might have impressed upon him the need to retain the measures that were already in place…” (Bump, 4/1).

Washington Post: Social distancing works. The earlier the better, California and Washington data show.
“Mandatory social distancing works. The earlier the better, preliminary data from two weeks of stay-at-home orders in California and Washington show. Those states were the first to report community cases of covid-19 and also the first in the nation to mandate residents stay at home to keep physically apart. Analyses from academics and federal and local officials indicate those moves bought those communities precious time — and also may have ‘flattened the curve’ of infections for the long haul…” (Fowler et al., 4/1).

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2017 Draft Plan Outlines U.S. Military Domestic Response To Significant Infectious Disease Outbreak

The Nation: Exclusive: The Military Knew Years Ago That a Coronavirus Was Coming
“Despite President Trump’s repeated assertions that the Covid-19 epidemic was ‘unforeseen’ and ‘came out of nowhere,’ the Pentagon was well aware of not just the threat of a novel influenza, but even anticipated the consequent scarcity of ventilators, face masks, and hospital beds, according to a 2017 Pentagon plan obtained by The Nation. … Titled ‘USNORTHCOM Branch Plan 3560: Pandemic Influenza and Infectious Disease Response,’ the draft plan is marked for official use only and dated January 6, 2017. The plan was provided to The Nation by a Pentagon official who requested anonymity to avoid professional reprisal…” (Klippenstein, 4/1).

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POLITICO Examines Trump Adviser Jared Kushner's Behind-The-Scenes, 'All-Of-Private-Sector' Operation To Address COVID-19

POLITICO: Behind the scenes, Kushner takes charge of coronavirus response
“Dozens of Trump administration officials have trooped to the White House podium over the last two months to brief the public on their effort to combat coronavirus, but one person who hasn’t — Jared Kushner — has emerged as perhaps the most pivotal figure in the national fight against the fast-growing pandemic. … Kushner’s group, which some have characterized as an ‘all-of-private-sector’ operation in contrast to Vice President Mike Pence’s ‘all-of-government’ task force, has had its successes — including airlifting emergency medical supplies to the United States, crowdsourcing mask and glove donations, and rapidly devising a last-ditch plan for hospitals to maximize ventilators. But the behind-the-scenes working group has also duplicated existing federal teams and operations, and its focus on rapid, short-term decisions has created concern among some health-agency officials, according to interviews with 11 people involved in Kushner’s effort, including senior government officials, outside advisers, and volunteers on the projects, as well as other health department and White House officials. Federal decision-making is complicated by the fact that Kushner has the full confidence of President Donald Trump, with whom he confers multiple times a day, while Trump has expressed frustration with some of the leaders of health agencies…” (Cancryn/Diamond, 4/1).

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Democrats To Propose Bipartisan Commission To Study U.S. Government Response To COVID-19; Presidential Candidate Biden Offers To Call Trump To Discuss Strategy

AP: Democrats proposing commission to study U.S. pandemic response
“House Democrats are drafting legislation that would create a bipartisan commission to study the U.S. government’s response to the coronavirus pandemic, modeled on one that examined the 9/11 attacks. The chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., and the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., are working on separate bills establishing a commission. Draft legislation from Thompson’s committee says the commission would provide a ‘full and complete accounting’ of the U.S. efforts…” (Jalonick, 4/1).

Fox News: Biden offers to call Trump at White House to discuss coronavirus response strategy
“Former Vice President Joe Biden is offering to call President Trump to discuss a strategy to combat the coronavirus pandemic rocking the nation, Fox News has learned. Biden’s offer comes after Kellyanne Conway, counselor to the president, challenged him to ‘call the White House today and offer some support.’ Biden has been offering advice and warnings to Trump about the coronavirus in media interviews and appearances for months. Wednesday, however, is the first time the former vice president is offering to speak with the president directly…” (Singman, 4/1).

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NIAID's Anthony Fauci To Receive Enhanced Personal Security Protection After Threats; Coronavirus To Impact Nation's Personality For 'Very Long Time,' He Says

New York Times: After Threats, Anthony Fauci to Receive Enhanced Personal Security
“Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, the nation’s leading expert on infectious diseases, who has become a regular at President Trump’s coronavirus briefings, will receive enhanced personal security after receiving threats following his repeated pleas for Americans to help slow the spread of the deadly pandemic, officials said on Wednesday…” (Benner/Shear, 4/1).

POLITICO: Coronavirus will be ‘imprinted on the personality of our nation for a very long time,’ Fauci warns
“Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, predicted on Wednesday that the effects of the coronavirus pandemic will be ‘imprinted on the personality of our nation’ for years to come. The stark comments represented a new kind of diagnosis from the country’s top infectious disease expert, who has emerged as a steadying fixture in the national consciousness as one of the leading administration officials working to both combat and better understand the public health crisis…” (Forgey, 4/1).

Additional coverage of Fauci’s work on COVID-19 is available from POLITICO and Washington Post.

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Development Organizations Face Decisions About Employee Safety, Work Continuity Amid COVID-19

Devex: As offices shut, aid leaders work to minimize project disruption
“As global health and development organizations transition more and more staff to work from home — with some international staff evacuating to their home countries — aid leaders are faced with striking a difficult balance between ensuring employee safety, and maintaining activities that support peoples’ health and livelihoods…” (Igoe, 4/2).

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U.N. Postpones Global Climate Conference Amid Ongoing COVID-19 Pandemic

Washington Post: Amid pandemic, U.N. cancels global climate conference
“The United Nations has postponed a pivotal climate conference scheduled for November amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, delaying an international effort to head off the worst consequences of climate change. … The gathering, scheduled to be hosted by the United Kingdom in November in Glasgow, Scotland, typically draws tens of thousands of activists, top government officials, and business leaders from around the world. This year’s meeting was envisioned as a moment for nations to offer more ambitious plans to reduce emissions of carbon dioxide and transition away from reliance on fossil fuels. … But the arena where the massive event was to take place, the SEC Centre, is being converted into a field hospital for patients infected by the virus that causes covid-19, the Scottish government said this week…” (Dennis/Mooney, 4/1).

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Media Outlets Continue To Cover UNFPA Report On Reproductive Rights Gaps

Devex: UNFPA findings provide ‘wake-up call’ on reproductive rights gaps
“Slightly more than half of women are able to make their own decisions about accessing health care, using contraception, and having sex with their husband or partner, new research from the United Nations Population Fund shows. The findings, released Wednesday, offer the first detailed update on specific sexual and reproductive health targets within the Sustainable Development Goals, revealing a mixed picture of progress across regions and demographics…” (Lieberman, 4/1).

Additional coverage of the new UNFPA report is available from Reuters.

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More News In Global Health

Borgen Magazine: 6 U.S. Global Health Bills (Ostuni, 4/1).

Devex: How COVID-19 could complicate treatment for HIV patients (Jerving, 4/2).

The Guardian: The village still suffering from Peru mercury spill fallout — after 20 years (Moeys, 4/2).

New York Times: Covid-19 Changed How the World Does Science, Together (Apuzzo/Kirkpatrick, 4/1).

Scientific American: Coronavirus Lockdowns Have Changed the Way Earth Moves (Gibney, 4/1).

Science Magazine: ‘We have no choice.’ Pandemic forces polio eradication group to halt campaigns (Roberts, 4/1).

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Editorials and Opinions

Opinion Pieces Discuss Various Aspects Of COVID-19 Pandemic

The Atlantic: Authoritarian Populists Have Six Classic Moves. Trump’s Response to COVID-19 Uses Five of Them.
Kristy Parker, counsel at Protect Democracy, and Yascha Mounk, contributing writer at The Atlantic, associate professor at Johns Hopkins University, senior fellow at the German Marshall Fund, senior adviser at Protect Democracy, and author (4/2).

The Conversation: Drug companies should drop their patents and collaborate to fight coronavirus
Enrico Bonadio, reader in Intellectual Property Law at City, University of London, and Andrea Baldini, associate professor of aesthetics and art theory at Nanjing University (4/1).

Devex: Opinion: How to address the impact of COVID-19 on global food systems
Richard Choularton, director of agriculture and economic growth, and Meredith Mallory, associate of agriculture and economic growth, both at Tetra Tech International Development Services (4/2).

Devex: Opinion: Keep global food chains alive amid COVID-19 crisis
Qu Dongyu, director general of the Food and Agriculture Organization (4/1).

Foreign Affairs: How to Pandemic-Proof Globalization
Shannon K. O’Neil, vice president, deputy director of studies, and Nelson and David Rockefeller senior fellow for Latin America studies at the Council on Foreign Relations (4/1).

Foreign Policy: The World’s Most Dangerous Coronavirus Lockdowns
Vera Mironova, visiting fellow at Harvard University (4/1).

Foreign Policy: America’s Pandemic War Games Don’t End Well
Mark Perry, author and reporter (4/1).

The Guardian: A public inquiry into the U.K.’s coronavirus response would find a litany of failures
Anthony Costello, professor of global health and sustainable development at UCL (4/1).

The Hill: The COVID-19 pandemic calls for the most urgent possible action
Andy Levin (D-Mich.), vice chair of the House Education and Labor Committee (4/1).

IPS: Coronavirus Proves Need for Free Healthcare for All — Now
Winnie Byanyima, executive director of UNAIDS (4/2).

IPS: The Economic Impact of COVID-19 on Developing Countries
Daud Khan, consultant and adviser for various governments and for international agencies including the World Bank and several U.N. agencies, and Leila Yasmine Khan, independent writer and editor (4/1).

Los Angeles Times: Op-Ed: COVID-19 shows that what we’re doing to animals is killing us, too
Viveca Morris, executive director of the Law, Ethics & Animals Program at Yale Law School (4/2).

National Review: The Truth about the National Security Council’s Pandemic Team
Rebeccah Heinrichs, senior fellow at the Hudson Institute (4/1).

New York Times: There Is an Antidote to Our Fear. It’s Called Leadership.
Elliot Ackerman, contributing opinion writer at the New York Times and author (4/2).

New York Times: The Racial Time Bomb in the Covid-19 Crisis
Charles M. Blow, opinion columnist at the New York Times (4/1).

New York Times: Why Are So Many More Men Dying from Coronavirus?
Sharon Moalem, scientist, physician, and author (4/2).

NPR: Opinion: The Way The U.S. Beat TB Could Be A Boon In Battling Coronavirus
Salmaan Keshavjee, professor of global health and social medicine at Harvard Medical School, director of the Harvard Medical School Center for Global Health Delivery, physician at Boston’s Brigham and Women’s Hospital, senior TB specialist at Partners In Health, and member of the Council on Foreign Relations; Aaron Shakow, director of the Initiative on Healing and Humanity at the Harvard Medical School Center for Global Health Delivery and research associate in the department of global health and social medicine; and Tom Nicholson, executive director of Advance Access and Delivery, research associate at Duke University’s Sanford School of Public Policy in the Duke Center for International Development, and member of the board of directors of the Global Health Council (4/1).

Project Syndicate: Pandemics and Progress
HRH Prince El Hassan bin Talal, founder of the Arab Thought Forum and the West Asia-North Africa Institute and chair of the Board of Trustees of the Royal Institute for Inter-Faith Studies (4/2).

Project Syndicate: The Politics of the Pandemic
Joschka Fischer, German foreign minister and vice chancellor from 1998-2005 (4/1).

Project Syndicate: Ebola Lessons for Fighting COVID-19
Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Board chair of Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance (4/1).

Washington Times: WHO and its leader play China’s puppets on coronavirus
Brett D. Schaefer, Jay Kingham fellow in international regulatory affairs at the Heritage Foundation’s Margaret Thatcher Center for Freedom (4/1).

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From the Global Health Policy Community

Global Health Community Addresses Various COVID-19 Topics

CSIS: Which Covid-19 Future Will We Choose?
J. Stephen Morrison, senior vice president and director, and Anna Carroll, associate fellow, both with the Global Health Policy Center at CSIS (4/1).

Chicago Council: Next Generation — The Impact of COVID-19 on the Future of Food Systems in Africa
Oyewale Abioye, Centre for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, University of Ibadan, Nigeria (4/1).

Council on Foreign Relations: The Instability of Global Supply Chains in a Pandemic, With Shannon K. O’Neil
James M. Lindsay, senior vice president and director of studies at the Council on Foreign Relations (4/1).

IntraHealth International: mHealth Tool Is Keeping Central American Clients Connected to HIV Care amid COVID-19 Shutdowns (4/1).

Science Speaks: COVID-19: A pandemic spells out needs for infectious diseases, global health security investments and leadership
Bertha Serwa Ayi, adjunct assistant professor of Medicine at the Kansas Health Sciences Center and adjunct lecturer at the University of Development Studies, Ghana (4/1).

Think Global Health: A Global Imperative for Local Support
Charles Holmes, professor of medicine and faculty co-director of the Center for Global Health Practice and Impact at Georgetown University Medical Center (3/31).

Think Global Health: Untrained Drug Sellers Replacing Doctors—A Challenge for COVID-19
Mishal S. Khan, associate professor of Health Policy & Systems at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and honorary faculty at Aga Khan University, Pakistan (3/31).

Think Global Health: COVID-19 Highlights the Need for Community Health
Angela Gichaga, CEO of Financing Alliance for Health (3/30).

Think Global Health: Wake-Up Call for Healthier Design
Etta Madete, architectural designer at BuildX Studio (3/30).

World Economic Forum: The COVID-19 pandemic could have huge knock-on effects on women’s health, says the U.N.
Peter Beech, World Economic Forum writer (4/2).

World Economic Forum: How climate change and the coronavirus are linked
Arthur Wyns, climate change adviser with the World Health Organization (4/2).

World Economic Forum: ‘Deeply concerned.’ WHO officials stress the need for continued vigilance — WHO briefing
Linda Lacina, digital editor with World Economic Forum (4/1).

World Economic Forum: How a U.S. quirk became a strength for some areas fighting COVID-19
John Letzing, digital editor for strategic intelligence with the World Economic Forum (4/1).

World Economic Forum: The threat of coronavirus in Africa flags a deeper crisis of global solidarity
Eddie Ndopu, United Nations Secretary-General’s Advocate for the Sustainable Development Goals at the U.N. (4/1).

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FT Health Monthly Newsletter Discusses Coronavirus, Features Interview With Infectious Disease Expert

Financial Times: FT Health: Coronavirus and the dangers of distraction
The Financial Times’ monthly global health newsletter discusses various issues related to the coronavirus outbreak and features an interview with Alimuddin Zumla, professor of infectious diseases and international health at the University College London and joint guest editor of the International Journal of Infectious Disease special issue on TB (Jack/Dodd, 4/1).

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USAID Must Adopt Civil Society Strategy In Its Journey To Self-Reliance Approach, Development Experts Say

Modernizing Foreign Assistance Network: To Succeed in its Journey to Self-Reliance Approach with Partner Countries, USAID needs a Civil Society Strategy
Lori Rowley, director for global food security and aid effectiveness at the Lugar Center, and Nora O’Connell, associate vice president for public policy and advocacy at Save the Children, discuss the importance of USAID adopting a civil society strategy in its Journey to Self-Reliance approach. The authors write, “We identified four overarching principles for engaging local civil society: promoting civil society participation in priority-setting; strengthening and protecting civic space; investing in local civil society actors; and ensuring an equitable and inclusive approach” (4/1).

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Aidspan Publishes New Issue Of 'Global Fund Observer'

Aidspan: Global Fund Observer
Aidspan, an independent watchdog of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, has published Issue 376 of the ‘Global Fund Observer.’ The newsletter features an article on the Global Fund’s and other global donors’ funding commitments to address COVID-19, a commentary on the importance of civil society involvement for an effective response to COVID-19 in Africa, and an analysis on how COVID-19 highlights the need for more effective Global Fund investments in health systems in sub-Saharan Africa (4/1).

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April 2020 Issue Of WHO Bulletin Available Online

WHO: Bulletin of the World Health Organization
The April 2020 WHO Bulletin features articles on ethical considerations for artificial intelligence in the health sector, including an editorial on balancing the risks and benefits of artificial intelligence in the health sector, a news article about regulating digital health, and a policy & practice piece on defining ethical standards for the application of digital tools to population health research (April 2020).

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From the U.S. Government

CDC's MMWR Discusses Preliminary Evidence Of Presymptomatic Transmission Of SARS-CoV-2 In Singapore

CDC’s “Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report”: Presymptomatic Transmission of SARS-CoV-2 — Singapore, January 23-March 16, 2020
Wycliffe E. Wei, senior resident at the National Public Health and Epidemiology Unit at Singapore’s National Centre for Infectious Diseases (NCID), and colleagues examine cases of COVID-19 reported in Singapore from January 23-March 16 and find preliminary evidence that indicates the occurrence of presymptomatic transmission of the virus. The authors note, “The possibility of presymptomatic transmission increases the challenges of containment measures. Public health officials conducting contact tracing should strongly consider including a period before symptom onset to account for the possibility of presymptomatic transmission. The potential for presymptomatic transmission underscores the importance of social distancing, including the avoidance of congregate settings, to reduce COVID-19 spread” (4/1).

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President Trump, Vice President Pence, Members Of The Coronavirus Task Force Provide Updates On U.S. Response To COVID-19 In Press Briefing

White House: Remarks by President Trump, Vice President Pence, and Members of the Coronavirus Task Force in Press Briefing
In this press briefing held Wednesday afternoon, President Trump, Vice President Pence, and members of the White House Coronavirus Task Force discuss developments regarding the U.S. response to COVID-19 (4/1).

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From KFF

KFF Resources Examine Global, Domestic Issues Related To Pandemic

KFF: COVID-19 Coronavirus Tracker — Updated as of April 2, 2020 (4/2).

KFF: Jen Kates and Josh Michaud Featured Speakers in Virtual Briefing About the Coronavirus Pandemic
On Monday evening, KFF’s Jen Kates, senior vice president and director of global health and HIV policy, and Josh Michaud, associate director of global health policy, were the featured guests in the Commonwealth Club of California’s continuing virtual series on the coronavirus outbreak. Audio is available here (3/31).

KFF: Put to the Test: Can the U.S. Get to the Next Phase of the COVID-19 Response? (Kates/Michaud, 4/1).

Additional KFF COVID-19 resources, including those focused on the response and impact within the U.S., are available here. KFF’s new blog series “Coronavirus Policy Watch” is available here.

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