KFF Daily Global Health Policy Report

In The News

Senate Foreign Relations Committee Endorses CIA Director Mike Pompeo For U.S. Secretary Of State

Bloomberg Politics: Pompeo Wins Surprise Support by Senate Panel to Lead State Department
“A divided Senate Foreign Relations Committee voted in favor of Mike Pompeo to be the next secretary of state, paving the way for the CIA director to gain approval from the full Senate later this week and handing a victory to President Donald Trump…” (Wadhams/Litvan, 4/23).

Fox News: Mike Pompeo recommended by Senate panel for secretary of state, barely avoiding committee rebuke
“…The panel had deadlocked on a party-line vote after Georgia Republican Sen. Johnny Isakson, who had been expected to vote for Pompeo, missed the committee meeting because of a funeral. But the committee then voted favorably on his nomination after Delaware Democratic Sen. Chris Coons, who opposes Pompeo, agreed to vote ‘present’ instead of ‘no’ because of Isakson’s situation. The final tally was 11 to 9 with 1 present. Isakson was allowed to vote by proxy in this particular case…” (Pappas, 4/23).

The Hill: Rand’s reversal advances Pompeo
“President Trump’s nominee for secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, appears to be on a glide path to confirmation after a last-minute reversal Monday from Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.). Paul’s surprise support helped push Pompeo over the top in an 11-9-1 Senate Foreign Relations Committee vote…” (Carney, 4/23).

Additional reporting on this story is available from the New York Times, NPR, POLITICO, Wall Street Journal, and Washington Post.

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U.S. President Trump Signs Legislation Allowing MCC To Engage In Regional Compacts

Devex: MCC can now sign regional compacts, expanding influence of infrastructure projects
“The Millennium Challenge Corporation can now make regional compacts, a move the organization says will allow it to better maximize resources and results by investing in projects that can benefit multiple countries at once. President Donald Trump signed the African Growth and Opportunity Act and Millennium Challenge Modernization Act Monday after the bill passed in the Senate and House with bipartisan support…” (Welsh, 4/23).

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CDC Director Redfield's Salary Nearly Twice As Much As Predecessor's Pay

Associated Press: CDC chief makes $375K, far exceeding his predecessors’ pay
“…Dr. Robert Redfield Jr., 66, has [had a] long career as a top HIV researcher, but he had no experience working in public health or managing a public health agency. The U.S. government is paying him $375,000 a year to run the Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. That’s nearly twice the annual compensation given to Dr. Brenda Fitzgerald, who had the job for six months before resigning in January. Her annual pay rate was $197,300…” (Stobbe, 4/23).

Forbes: A Little-Known Program Explains Why the New CDC Director Earns Twice as Much as His Predecessor
“…Redfield’s salary falls under a program called Title 42, which is intended to attract top scientists with essential skills to public service by edging a bit closer to the salaries they could expect to make in the private sector. Thousands of workers at the CDC and National Institutes of Health (NIH) are paid under Title 42. Still, it is unusual to pay a CDC director — or a director of other national health agencies — under this program. … It is unclear why Redfield’s salary was determined under Title 42 while those of his predecessors were not…” (Detrick, 4/24).

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Washington Post Examines Debate Over Changes In Management Of U.S. Strategic National Stockpile Under Trump Administration

Washington Post: Inside the secret U.S. stockpile meant to save us all in a bioterror attack
“…For nearly two decades, the [Strategic National Stockpile, a government repository of drugs and supplies ready for deployment in public health emergency,] has been almost exclusively managed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. That will change under a Trump administration plan to shift oversight of the $575 million program to a different part of the Department of Health and Human Services. Doing so, proponents say, will keep the program intact but streamline decision-making and create ‘efficiencies.’ But some public health officials and members of Congress in both parties worry the move will disrupt a complex process that relies on long-standing relationships between the federal program and the state and local agencies responsible for distributing the medicine…” (Sun, 4/24).

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U.N. Officials Encourage Long-Term Financing, Partnerships To Achieve Development Goals

U.N. News: At development financing forum, top U.N. officials urge breakaway from ‘short-termism’
“The United Nations will support countries’ path to sustainable development by brokering partnerships, pursuing innovative finance, leveraging resources, and building the necessary capacities, senior officials said Monday, highlighting the need for a change of mind-set from ‘short-termism’ to long-term investments…” (4/23).

Xinhua News: U.N. official stresses need for development financing
“U.N. Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed on Monday called for efforts to boost development financing, particularly for countries with urgent needs. The global economy is strengthening and a broad-based economic upturn has underpinned progress in many areas. But significant weaknesses and medium-term risks in the world economy continue to pose challenges, Mohammed told a forum of the U.N. Economic and Social Council…” (4/23).

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European Commission Justified In Refusing To Propose Ban On E.U. Funding For Abortion Services, Court Rules

EURACTIV: E.U. court deals blow to anti-abortion campaigners
“The E.U.’s top court has dealt a blow to anti-abortion activists, ruling that the European Commission was justified in its refusal to propose a ban on E.U. funding for abortion services. In a ruling on Monday (23 April), the European Court of Justice stated that the ‘One of Us’ citizens’ initiative ‘cannot require the Commission to submit a proposal for a legal act.’ It added that the E.U.’s executive arm had demonstrated that ‘the ban on abortion funding would constrain the E.U.’s ability to attain the objective of reducing maternal mortality’…” (Fox, 4/24).

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More News In Global Health

Devex: New partnership aims for NCD ‘best practices’ in conflict, fragile settings (Ravelo, 4/24).

Devex: Cities and NCDs: The growing threat of childhood obesity in Quito (Ravelo, 4/24).

Devex: Cities and NCDs: Curbing excess salt consumption in Ouagadougou (Ravelo, 4/23).

Thomson Reuters Foundation: For better health, let communities take the pulse and the purse strings (Hares, 4/23).

The Times: Universal cure for snakebites within sight (4/21).

Xinhua News: Namibia cuts malaria rates by more than 90 percent (4/23).

Xinhua News: WHO official commends Ghana’s commitment towards universal health coverage (4/24).

Xinhua News: Cuban president inaugurates international health convention to promote international cooperation (4/24).

Xinhua News: Hunting down malaria in Comoros — another China-Africa story (4/24).

Xinhua News: Interview: Ambassador hails Chinese innovation in Africa’s fight against malaria (4/24).

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Editorials and Opinions

More Innovation, Sustained Investments From Affected Nations Necessary To End Malaria

Financial Times: Time to double down on malaria
Peter Sands, executive director of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria

“…What will it take to stop this global health menace? We need more innovation and more money. … To defeat an infectious disease like malaria you have to hit it hard — and you have to keep hitting it until it’s gone. … [W]hat will really make a difference is incremental funding from the affected countries themselves. Getting rid of malaria requires sustained investment in health systems and, ultimately, there’s only so much that can be done from outside. The key to sustainable and resilient health systems — and to defeating malaria — is local taxes being invested in people’s health. … [The benefits of doing so] are compelling, hard-nosed economic reasons for ridding the world of malaria. So the global health community must get equally hard-nosed about finding the money. This means talking about tax and budget priorities. … But now we need to double down. As part of the Sustainable Development Goals, world leaders committed to ending malaria by 2030. That goal is achievable, but only if we act decisively — and now” (4/24).

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Political Will, Funding Necessary To Improve Global Road Safety

Devex: Opinion: The path out of poverty requires investment in road safety
Lord Robertson, chair of the FIA Foundation and member of the U.K. House of Lords

“A new United Nations Road Safety Trust Fund announced last week offers the international community a chance to address the lack of resources that has undermined efforts to end road deaths. … Without political focus and, crucially, unprecedented financing we are destined to fall short of [the Sustainable Development Goal target to halve the number of global deaths and injuries from road traffic accidents] and fail the legacy of the hundreds of millions of people already affected by violence on the roads. … The new U.N. fund provides an opportunity to galvanize and coordinate the cross-sector investment which is urgently needed to combat this public health epidemic. Donations to the fund can help unlock new government and municipal funding, catalyzing road safety action across the globe, and refocus national road safety budgets toward proven safe system interventions. … [N]ow is the moment for development partners to come together and scale up global efforts to address the road safety situation, building on the progress that has already been made…” (4/23).

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Focus On 7 'Tension Points' Can Help Ensure Health Gains Shared More Equitably

STAT: The one percent will continue to get healthier. The 99 percent should, too
Per Kristian Hong, partner in A.T. Kearney’s health practice, and Erik R. Peterson, partner with A.T. Kearney and managing director of the firm’s Global Business Policy Council

“…Amazing [health] advances have been made during the past seven decades … Even greater advances are on the horizon. But will this dazzling health future be shared equitably across communities? Or will only the wealthiest one percent of the global population reap benefits that are inaccessible to the 99 percent? A report we recently coauthored identified seven tension points that will have an outsized influence in answering those two questions. Demographic shifts … Innovation … Science … Consumerization … Prevention … Patient data … Cost of care … As the WHO marks seven decades of working to improve health for all, it is essential to examine how these seven tension points will shape health access and outcomes over the next decade and beyond. The global one percent will clearly benefit from advances in our understanding and treatment of disease and our ability to prevent it. But translating the promise of these innovations to broadly shared outcomes for the remaining 99 percent will require concerted attention from government, business, and public health leaders everywhere” (4/24).

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From the Global Health Policy Community

Bill Gates Brings Back 'Mosquito Week' On His 'Gates Notes'

Gates Notes: This animal kills more people in a day than sharks do in a century
Bill Gates, co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, writes, “I’m determined to spread the word about mosquitoes — which is why I’m bringing back Mosquito Week here on Gates Notes. Everything I’m posting this week is dedicated to my least favorite pest. You can read some good news about a country that hopes to eliminate malaria by 2020. You can see how the bed nets the Mozambique Ministry of Health and World Vision distributed last year on behalf of the Gates Notes Insider community are making a difference. I’m going to be talking about mosquitoes on my social channels all week, and I hope you’ll join the conversation…” (4/23).

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Brookings Report Discusses Private Sector Investments In Health R&D

Brookings Institution’s “TechTank”: Who’s investing in health care R&D?
Liz Sablich, communications director for governance studies at the Brookings Institution, discusses results from a Brookings report on private sector investment in overall health R&D, highlighting the leading pharmaceutical companies and venture capital firms that invest substantial sums of money in health R&D (4/23).

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From the U.S. Government

U.S. State Department Announces Additional $50M In Humanitarian Assistance For Refugees Fleeing Rakhine State

U.S. Department of State: Ongoing U.S. Humanitarian Assistance for the Rakhine State Crisis
“[Monday], Acting Secretary of State John J. Sullivan announced $50 million in additional humanitarian assistance for vulnerable people fleeing the Rakhine State crisis. … The United States continues to provide life-saving assistance that will support refugees and Bangladeshi host communities to provide protection, emergency shelter, water, sanitation, health care, and psychosocial support for people affected by the crisis … We urge other donors to join in providing the additional humanitarian assistance still needed for those affected by the crisis” (4/23).

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GPEI History Project Aims To Document Global Polio Eradication Efforts

CDC’s “Our Global Voices”: The Global Polio Eradication Initiative History Project: Documenting the Eradication of Polio
Oral Historian Hana Crawford, Project Manager Mary Hilpertshauser, and Archivist Laura Frizzell, all with the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) History Project, discuss their roles and experiences documenting “the history of global polio eradication, the global partnership, and lessons learned” (4/24).

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HPV Vaccination Project In Cambodia Offers Insight Into Preventing Cervical Cancer In Other Communities, Nations

CDC’s “Our Global Voices”: Preventing Cervical Cancer in Cambodia: Evaluating the HPV Vaccination Demonstration Project
Julie Garon, an epidemiologist with the Vaccine Introduction Team of the CDC Global Immunization Division, discusses Cambodia’s experience implementing the Gavi-supported HPV vaccination demonstration project, in which a school-based delivery strategy was successful in reaching 9-year-old girls. Garon writes, “The Cambodia experience illustrates the great strides being made in other countries toward equitable access of this lifesaving vaccine” (4/24).

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CDC, Partners Work To Identify, Fill Gaps In Tetanus Immunization In Uganda, Worldwide

CDC’s “Our Global Voices”: Tetanus: Eliminating the Forgotten, Deadly Disease
Rebecca Casey, EIS officer in CDC’s Global Immunization Division, discusses the importance of tetanus vaccines and booster shots in the disease’s prevention. Casey highlights the situation in Uganda, where the CDC and partners are working to identify and fill gaps in tetanus immunization from infancy through adulthood (4/24).

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