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Kaiser Daily Global Health Policy Report

In The News

Devex Analysis Examines OECD Data On 2015 Official Development Assistance

Devex: The biggest funding trends from latest donor data
“…In our analysis of OECD’s data, Devex has delved into [Official Development Assistance (ODA)] and [Development Assistance Committee (DAC)] trends to provide insights into funding changes and issues impacting development programs. We have developed a Tableau insight tool providing a 2015 DAC snapshot, time series information on DAC funding since 1995, analysis features to compare selected donor countries and donor funding profiles by year. DAC recipients can be analyzed by developing countries, LDCs, and total funding including contributions to multilateral organizations. Below are a few of the insights that stand out from the latest data…” (Cornish, 1/9).

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U.N. SG Guterres Calls On G77 Leadership To Place Development At Center Of U.N.'s Activities, Reform

Inter Press Service: Guterres Seeks G77 Leadership in U.N. Reforms
“Addressing members of the Group of 77, U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres said development must be at the center of U.N.’s activities because it is a basic condition for peace and security while human rights can only be exercised in the context in which development takes place. He told delegates the U.N. development system needs to be reformed because it is still unable to fully respond to the needs of member states…” (1/9).

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Smoking-Related Illnesses Cost More Than $1T Globally, Set To Kill 8M By 2030, WHO/NCI Study Shows

Financial Times: Emerging economies buck trend for decline in smoking
“Smoking rates have risen sharply in a small number of countries, running against a trend in which world tobacco is in retreat. Tobacco use is becoming increasingly concentrated in low- and middle-income countries that are home to 80 percent of the world’s 1bn smokers, according to the World Health Organization…” (Cocco, 1/10).

Reuters: Smoking costs $1 trillion, soon to kill 8 million a year: WHO/NCI study
“Smoking costs the global economy more than $1 trillion a year, and will kill one third more people by 2030 than it does now, according to a study by the World Health Organization and the U.S. National Cancer Institute published on Tuesday. That cost far outweighs global revenues from tobacco taxes, which the WHO estimated at about $269 billion in 2013-2014…” (Miles, 1/9).

Washington Post: Smoking costs the world economy $1 trillion per year, World Health Organization says
“…The report recommends that countries adopt policies to control tobacco use, including taxing and raising the price of cigarettes, to save lives. More than 60 authors — physicians, public health experts, researchers, and other scientists — contributed to the report, which was peer-reviewed by more than 70 reviewers…” (Wang, 1/10).

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Digital Health NGO Official Discusses How Technology Can Help Connect Patients, Providers, Improve Care

Devex: 4 major trends digital health needs to embrace in 2017 and beyond
“…[T]he health care industry could [use] cellphones to connect patients to nearby health workers, guide them to correctly assess a person’s condition and suggest treatment, send reminders to patients to take their medication and attend follow-up visits, and even enable them to pay for medication and visits using mobile money. … Devex spoke to [Marc Mitchell, president of D-tree International,] about where digital health is headed in 2017 and beyond. He pointed to four crucial health trends which he believes digital health developers will need to embrace if their technology is to fulfill its potential…” (Edwards, 1/9).

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Editorials and Opinions

10 Rules President-Elect Trump Should Follow To Make Tenure Successful, Move Country Forward

Daily Caller: 10 Rules Trump Should Follow For A Successful Presidency
Dan Glickman, chair of the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition

“…Here are 10 things [President-elect Donald Trump] can do to make his tenure a success and move the country forward. 1. Reach out to Congress frequently and be bipartisan. … 2. Show empathy … 3. Remember that many of the voters who put you in office are small town and rural Americans, and folks who largely felt left out of the economy and political process. … 4. You are the nation’s top public servant, so remember that it’s not all about you. … 5. Watch your impulsiveness, particularly on Twitter. … 6. U.S. global leadership is critical not only to this country but to the global order. That means the U.S. has to lead on issues like diplomacy, global food security, disease prevention, and more. President George W. Bush created PEPFAR and saved millions of people from dying of HIV/AIDS. You can produce a smart foreign policy that charts a new course but is responsible and sophisticated in the use of diplomacy, development and defense. 7. … [Get] control of money in politics and be a leader in cleaning up our campaign finance swamp. … 8. Produce a large infrastructure plan with bipartisan support … 9. Visit each cabinet department during your first six months in office. … 10. Above all, listen…” (1/9).

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4 Questions U.S. Senators Should Ask Secretary Of State Nominee Rex Tillerson During Confirmation Hearings

Devex: Opinion: 4 questions on foreign aid for Rex Tillerson
Diana Ohlbaum, independent consultant, executive committee member of the Modernizing Foreign Assistance Network, and principal of Turner4D

“The basic story lines of Rex Tillerson’s upcoming confirmation hearings before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Wednesday are easy to predict. Russia will be at the top of the agenda. … But Tillerson — and the rest of the world — will learn as much from the questions senators overlook as from the ones they pose. … At a minimum, senators and the American public have a right to expect answers to the following four questions on foreign aid and development: Do you agree that development should be a mainstay of U.S. foreign policy? … As secretary, what would be your development priorities? … Do you believe that current levels of foreign aid are adequate for the task at hand? … What further aid reforms, if any, do you believe are needed? … Due diligence requires that senators probe his potential conflicts of interest, as well as his views on the role of human rights in U.S. foreign policy, the future of nuclear arms control, the challenges posed by global climate change, and the capacity of the foreign service, among other issues. Unfortunately, senators may be called to choose between confirming someone whose views are unknown and malleable, and confirming someone whose views are known and unpalatable” (1/10).

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U.S. International Aid Plays Important Role In Sustainable Development

The Hill: International aid can remain beyond politics
Kate Schecter, president and CEO of World Neighbors, Inc.

“…[I]t’s important to understand that the majority of U.S. international aid programs — public and private — are not charity. Unlike charity, these programs are not meant to be providing aid indefinitely. Rather than perpetually alleviating the suffering caused by poverty, development projects are designed to help eliminate it. … [I]t is only through sustainable development that poverty and suffering are reduced and, eventually, eliminated. We can all play a role in this. In fact, if you pay federal taxes, you do play a role. You help fund the programs that help lift millions out of poverty and lay the basis for a more stable and peaceful international community. International aid — public and private — is one of America’s great success stories. We all have a stake in policies built on the truth that helping others is the best way to help ourselves” (1/9).

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U.N. Must Reform To Enable Peace, Security, Allow Partnerships To Work Toward SDGs

Newsweek: U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres: My Vision for Revitalizing the United Nations
António Guterres, secretary general of the U.N.

“…Around the world, conflicts have become more complex and interlinked — producing gross violations of international humanitarian law and human rights abuses. … Meanwhile, climate change, population growth, rapid urbanization, food insecurity, and water scarcity are adding to the tensions and instability. The greatest shortcoming of the international community today is its failure to prevent conflict and maintain global security. As secretary-general of the United Nations, I have called for a surge in diplomacy for peace and appealed for 2017 to be a year for peace. … The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, adopted by world leaders two years ago, is a blueprint for making our world more equitable, sustainable, and livable. To implement this plan — and its 17 Sustainable Development Goals — we need to broaden the circle of action to include governments, bilateral, and international organizations, and international financial institutions. Partnerships with civil society, the business community, and others are critical to success. … For the U.N. to achieve its full purpose and potential, it too must change. It is time for us to recognize shortcomings and reform the way we work. … We face enormous global challenges. They can be solved only if we work together” (1/9).

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As Global Institutions Undergo Leadership Transitions, WHO, U.N., World Bank Must Foster Solidarity For Global Health

Health Affairs: Global Health: A Pivotal Moment Of Opportunity And Peril
Lawrence O. Gostin, professor and faculty director, and Eric A. Friedman, project leader of the Platform for a Framework Convention on Global Health, both at the O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law at Georgetown University

“A growing tide of populism in Europe and the United States, combined with other factors, threatens the solidarity upon which the global health movement is based. The highest-profile example of the turn toward populism is U.S. president-elect Donald Trump, whose proposals would redefine U.S. engagement in global health, development, and environmental efforts. In this challenging landscape, three influential global institutions — the United Nations, the World Health Organization, and the World Bank — are undergoing leadership transitions. This new global health leadership should prioritize global health security, including antimicrobial resistance, health system strengthening, and action on mass migration and climate change. … The immense health threats facing the world would challenge health leaders under any circumstances. Yet the gains of nationalist politicians diametrically opposed to the solidarity that global health and the right to health require place even greater demands on the World Health Organization, the United Nations, and the World Bank. These institutions have a special responsibility to foster that solidarity. One way to do so, with the WHO and the U.N. in the lead, is to mobilize the world around a powerful vision of rights and equity that would embed the right to health in national and global health governance. At a time of international discord and distrust, such an initiative ‘would bring countries together in a common venture for global health — and help heal a fractured world'” (January 2017).

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From the Global Health Policy Community

'Science Speaks' Highlights 4 New Members Of 115th Congress's Senate Foreign Relations Committee

Center for Global Health Policy’s “Science Speaks”: 115th Congress: Senate Foreign Relations gets four new members
Ahead of U.S. Senate hearings for Secretary of State nominee Rex Tillerson, Antigone Barton, senior editor and writer of “Science Speaks,” highlights the four new members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee: Sens. Rob Portman (R-Ohio), Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), Todd Young (R-Ind.), and Cory Booker (D-N.J.) (1/9).

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Private Sector Continues To Develop Innovative Ways To Prevent, Treat Diseases

Friends of the Global Fight Blog: The Private Sector Steps Up On Innovating For Health
Kate Broendel, senior communications manager at Friends of the Global Fight, discusses how the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is working with the private sector to help develop health innovations that prevent and treat diseases like HIV and malaria (1/9).

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Bill Gates Examines How Life Is Improving On African Continent

Gates Notes: Five Reasons I’m Hopeful about Africa
In this blog post, Bill Gates writes, “For my first blog of the new year, I want to share evidence [that life is getting better for more people on our planet] from a place where many people wouldn’t expect to find it — Africa. … Although 2016 was a tough year for many African economies, almost every trend on the continent has been moving in the right direction over the last decade. Per capita income, foreign investment, agricultural productivity, mobile banking, entrepreneurship, immunization rates, and school enrollment are all heading upwards. Poverty, armed conflicts, HIV, malaria, and child mortality are all on the decline — steeply so in many places…” (1/9).

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From the U.S. Government

U.S. State Department Official Highlights Discussion Of Gender Equality, Disability Rights Globally With Former U.N. Official

U.S. Department of State’s “DipNote”: A Conversation on Gender Equality and Disability Rights with Silvia Quan
Judith Heumann, special adviser for international disability rights at the U.S. Department of State, discusses the work of Silva Quan, who recently finished a two-year term as vice chair of the U.N. Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. The blog post highlights a recent podcast of the two women discussing gender equality and disability rights globally (1/9).

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