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Kaiser Daily Global Health Policy Report

In The News

U.N. Office For The Coordination Of Humanitarian Affairs Appeals For Record $22.2B For 2017

Associated Press: U.N. humanitarian aid agency: Record $22.2B needed in 2017
“The U.N.’s humanitarian aid coordination agency says it and partners require a record $22.2 billion next year to help people hit by conflict and disasters around the world, a 10 percent increase from this year…” (Keaten, 12/5).

The Guardian: U.N. makes biggest ever aid appeal amid fears of compassion fatigue
“…The annual appeal, to be launched on Monday against the backdrop of a struggling global economy, a rising tide of nationalist sentiment epitomized by politicians such as Donald Trump, and growing compassion fatigue, will seek to raise roughly $22bn (£17.4bn). But in recent years, donor countries have failed even to come close to meeting funding requirements. Last year’s $20.1bn appeal — at the time the largest ever made — resulted in a funding shortfall of $10.7bn…” (Hodal, 12/4).

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Bloomberg Philanthropies Commits $360M Over 5 Years To Implement Anti-Tobacco Initiatives In LMICs

Wall Street Journal: Bloomberg Expands Effort to Curb Tobacco Use Worldwide
“Former New York City mayor and billionaire philanthropist Michael Bloomberg has spent hundreds of millions of dollars of his fortune over the past decade fighting tobacco use in the developing world. Now, with cigarette use declining globally, he is deepening his campaign. Mr. Bloomberg is committing $360 million to be used between 2017 and 2022 to help raise tobacco taxes, implement smoke-free laws, and pursue other strategies to curb tobacco use in low- and middle-income countries, according to Bloomberg Philanthropies, the philanthropic arm of his foundation…” (McKay, 12/5).

Washington Post: Michael Bloomberg may be Big Tobacco’s biggest enemy
“…The program includes 110 countries, among them China, India, Indonesia, and Bangladesh. To date, the group has worked with 59 countries with a population of nearly 3.5 billion people to introduce tobacco-control laws and policies and with 36 countries to help them create systems to monitor tobacco use and policy implementation. In India, for example, the government now requires graphic health warnings covering 85 percent of both sides of cigarette packages. And Bangladesh has banned tobacco sales to minors…” (Cha, 12/5).

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DfID Releases First Multilateral, Bilateral Aid Reviews Since 2011

Devex: Winners and losers in DfID’s new Multilateral Aid Review
“The Department for International Development has released its first Multilateral Development Review since 2011, outlining priorities for future multilateral spending and identifying strengths and weaknesses among its 37 multilateral partners. Multilateral organizations the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, the Commonwealth Secretariat, and the Caribbean Development Bank took a beating in the spending review, while health-focused organizations including the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria and Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance drew praise from the agency, which currently spends 40 percent of its 14 billion pound aid budget through multilateral organizations…” (Anders, 12/2).

Devex: What’s missing from DfID’s Bilateral Development Review?
“The U.K. Department for International Development released Thursday its first Bilateral Development Review since 2011, after a yearlong delay. … Despite the relatively unsurprising results, civil society organizations speaking to Devex said this review offers one significant shift from past BDRs. Many development organizations claim the agency left them out of review consultations, a radical departure from the methodology used in the previous BDR in 2011…” (Anders, 12/2).

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People With Disabilities 'Continue To Face Grave Disadvantages' Decade After Treaty, U.N. SG Ban Says

U.N. News Centre: Decade after global treaty’s adoption, persons with disabilities still at ‘grave disadvantage’ — Ban
“United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon [Friday] highlighted the challenges people with disabilities face despite progress made since the adoption of a global treaty to promote their rights a decade ago. ‘In the past decade, we have seen much progress. But, persons with disabilities continue to face grave disadvantages,’ Mr. Ban told a high-level meeting on the 10th anniversary of the adoption of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), organized by the U.N. General Assembly…” (12/2).

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Egyptian Law Creating Stricter Penalties For FGM Goes Into Effect, Health Ministry Says

Agence France-Presse: Egypt brings in tougher penalties against female genital mutilation
“An amended law that toughens penalties for female genital mutilation to up to 15 years in jail has come into effect, the health ministry announced Sunday. Health ministry officials will monitor and oversee clinics and private hospitals to enforce the anti-FGM law that came into effect last Tuesday, the ministry said in a statement…” (12/4).

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Editorials and Opinions

U.S. Should Devote More Global Health Funds To Goods Rather Than Service Delivery

Washington Post: How the U.S. should change its approach to global health
Lawrence H. Summers, Charles W. Eliot university professor at Harvard

“…We are in uncharted territory. No one can know what the attitude of the new U.S. administration will be to funding foreign assistance of any kind or to global cooperation in the health area. … The world needs to move decisively away from the current regime, where 80 percent of health assistance is devoted to supporting national health care delivery and only 20 percent is devoted to global service delivery, toward a model where half of assistance is devoted to global goods. … Mostly … it is because of the overwhelming return on investments in global goods that bear on health. … [F]oreign assistance priorities should be based on analysis, evidence, and argument. The more morally important the issue, the more important is rigorous analysis and debate. … [M]y experience in policymaking in the United States and at the international level is that reason has always had its day in court and usually carried the day. I desperately hope this tradition continues…” (12/2).

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4 Steps Necessary To Implement 'Precision Public Health' In Developing Nations

Nature: Four steps to precision public health
Scott F. Dowell, deputy director for surveillance and epidemiology; David Blazes, senior program officer for surveillance and epidemiology; and Susan Desmond-Hellmann, chief executive, all at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

“…The use of data to guide interventions that benefit populations more efficiently is a strategy we call precision public health. It requires robust primary surveillance data, rapid application of sophisticated analytics to track the geographical distribution of disease, and the capacity to act on such information. The availability and use of precise data is becoming the norm in wealthy countries. But large swathes of the developing world are not reaping its advantages. … Four concrete steps are necessary for precision public health to become regularly available in the developing world. Register births and deaths. … Track disease. … Incorporate laboratory analyses. … Train more people. … Wherever they live — in a village, city, or country, in the global south or north — people have the right to public health decisions that are based on the best data and science possible, that minimize risk and cost, and maximize health in their communities” (12/5).

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Broad Application Of Community-Based Approaches Will Help Achieve AIDS-Free Generation

Huffington Post: In It Together — Towards An AIDS-Free Generation
Joia Mukherjee, chief medical officer at Partners In Health and associate professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School

“…To achieve [the] ambitious goal [of an AIDS-free generation] there is much hard work to do. We need to build on a foundation of medical advances by building a layer of community-focused outreach that targets and treats not just the disease, but the social determinants that enable it. … To reach this ambitious goal, a broader application of proven community-based approaches — with a focus on testing, treatment, and prevention — is critical. … Our collective efforts to combat this epidemic must account for the underlying conditions that facilitate its deadly spread. [Partners in Health (PIH)] provides a voice and a model for reaching the world’s most vulnerable HIV patients based on a community-focused, rights-based, and equity-driven agenda. By applying these strategies more broadly, we are convinced that the elusive goal of a generation free of HIV/AIDS is within reach” (12/2).

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Experience Of, Lessons From Addressing NCDs In Wealthy Nations Must Be Applied To LMICs

Project Syndicate: Globalizing the Fight Against Non-Communicable Disease
George Weisz, professor of the history of medicine at McGill University

“Global health organizations and initiatives … have traditionally focused on infectious diseases, from malaria … to smallpox … But there has long been a tiny corner of global health that has targeted chronic non-communicable diseases (NCDs) in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). As these countries make progress on development, pressure to expand that corner is mounting. … [R]eports have shone a spotlight on the threat posed by NCDs in LMICs … [A]fter 60 years of confronting NCDs in advanced countries, it is clear that acute interventions tend to attract more support. In any case, one hopes that something has been learned from our decades of experience in fighting NCDs, and that these lessons can be applied in the more challenging and resource-poor settings of the developing world” (12/2).

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From the Global Health Policy Community

Sharing Information, Filling Knowledge Gaps Critical To Responding To Disease Outbreaks, Wellcome Trust Director Says

AMA Wire: How epidemics take lives and bring global health into focus
Troy Parks, writer for AMA, highlights a TEDMED presentation by Jeremy Farrar, director of the Wellcome Trust, who discussed his experience working in Vietnam during the SARS outbreak, and the importance of sharing information and learning from other epidemics (12/5).

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Save The Children CEO Carolyn Miles Discusses Group's Work On Humanosphere Podcast

Humanosphere: Carolyn Miles of Save the Children on protecting kids in today’s world
Imana Gunawan, Humanosphere’s social media manager and podcast producer, and Humanosphere correspondent Tom Murphy discuss news from the past two weeks and interview Carolyn Miles, CEO and president of Save the Children USA, about “how we’re doing at making the world a better place for children and what makes Save the Children distinctive” (12/2).

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USAID Publishes New Issue Of 'FrontLines'

USAID: FrontLines
The November/December issue of USAID’s FrontLines features articles on various topics, including the Himalayan Cataract Project, which “has treated millions of patients to restore their sight, quickly and affordably, eliminating nearly all treatable blindness in Nepal,” and a Nepalese program that uses DNA analysis to protect wildlife and prevent disease spread, to humans and animals (November/December 2016).

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