KFF Daily Global Health Policy Report

In The News

U.S. Secretary Of State Tillerson Faces Resistance From House Representatives On Trump Administration's Proposed Cuts To Foreign Affairs Budget

Devex: U.S. House hearings push Tillerson on budget, staff, and policy
“…During his second day on Capitol Hill, Rex Tillerson defended [the] Trump administration’s foreign affairs budget proposal and foreign policy priorities [in the House]. The former oil company executive faced stiff resistance to his message that the U.S. can enhance the effectiveness of its international engagement while cutting foreign affairs spending by [more than 30] percent. Most representatives — both Democrats and Republicans — expressed concern about what many see as the administration’s de-prioritization of American diplomacy and development…” (Igoe, 6/15).

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Group Of U.S. Lawmakers Request Army Hold Public Hearings On Zika Vaccine Licensing

Miami Herald: Florida congressional members want U.S. Army to hold public hearings on Zika vaccine
“A bipartisan group of members of Congress from Florida has asked the acting secretary of the U.S. Army to hold public hearings before awarding exclusive rights to a French pharmaceutical manufacturer to develop a Zika vaccine using technology invented by the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research and funded by American taxpayers…” (Chang, 6/14).

STAT: Lawmakers ask U.S. Army to hold a hearing on Zika vaccine licensing
“…In a June 13 letter, eight U.S. House Democrats and one Republican expressed concern about the ‘potential for monopolistic practices that would, effectively, keep this life-saving vaccine out of reach for far too many of our constituents.’ At the same time, U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson, who is also a Democrat, sent his own letter in which he urged the Army to limit the price for the vaccine…” (Silverman, 6/14).

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Development Banks Step In To Fill Gaps In Humanitarian Aid For Africa Left By Traditional Donors

Thomson Reuters Foundation: Record hunger in Horn of Africa pushes development banks to step in
“With a record-breaking 26.5 million people going hungry in the Horn of Africa, development banks are increasing their humanitarian funding to fill a gap left by traditional donors, a high-level mission said on Tuesday. … In an unprecedented move, the World Bank is giving $50 million to the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization to distribute emergency food, water, and cash in Somalia. … The African Development Bank (ADB) has also announced $1.1 billion to combat drought in six countries, mostly in the Horn of Africa…” (Migiro, 6/13).

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Additional Political Will, Funding Needed To Support Efforts To End Cholera In Haiti, U.N. Officials Say

Miami Herald: U.N. pushes to finance Haiti’s cholera cleanup with leftover peacekeeping dollars
“With most U.N. member nations, including the United States, refusing to contribute toward a $400 million trust fund to eliminate an imported cholera epidemic from Haiti, U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres has cobbled together another way to get the money. Guterres wants member countries to voluntarily turn over $40.5 million that will be left over when the U.N. Stabilization Mission in Haiti ends in October…” (Charles, 6/14).

U.N. News Centre: Political will, financial support needed to bolster new approach to cholera in Haiti — U.N. deputy chief
“The United Nations deputy chief [Wednesday] called on member states to fund the organization’s new strategy to counter cholera in Haiti, stressing that the initiative is facing a critical shortage of resources. ‘Without additional resources, the intensified cholera response and control efforts cannot be sustained through 2017 and 2018,’ said Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed during an informal briefing to the General Assembly on the organization’s latest report on the strategy. ‘Without your political will and financial support, we have only good intentions and words’…” (6/14).

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Number Of Ethiopians Needing Food Aid Could Double To 16M Next Month, Aid Workers Warn

Financial Times: Aid workers warn Ethiopians in need of food aid could double to 16m
“International donors are warning that the number of Ethiopians surviving on food assistance could double to 16 million next month as some aid agencies criticize the government for downplaying the severity of the crisis. The U.N. has said that food for 7.8 million people already receiving help will run out next month as the country grapples with its worst drought in years…” (Aglionby, 6/14).

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Activists Criticize Uganda President Museveni For Failing To Mention Key Populations In Nation's New Fast-Track HIV Plan

The Guardian: Uganda fails to target gay men and sex workers in fast-track HIV initiative
“Activists have criticized the Ugandan president for failing to cater for gay men in his new plan to end HIV by 2030. President Yoweri Museveni launched his ambitious initiative last week, but did not specifically mention gay people, sex workers, and drug users — who bear a disproportionate share of the HIV burden. Activists said the move was a disaster and a major blow for HIV prevention, treatment, and care among these groups…” (Okiror, 6/15).

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As Global Temperatures Rise, Researchers Document Move Of Tropical Diseases Toward Arctic

National Geographic: Climate Change Pushing Tropical Diseases Toward Arctic
“…[A]s greenhouse gases boost temperatures across the globe, rare pathogens like [those] from hotter parts of the planet are now creeping toward the poles, creating new risks for people. … Changes in precipitation, wind, or heat are shifting the threat posed by other human illnesses, from cholera to a rare freshwater brain-eating amoeba to rodent-driven infections like hantavirus. And the importance of all these changes are only growing more significant…” (Welch, 6/14).

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1 In 5 Children In Wealthy Nations Live In Poverty, UNICEF Report Shows

Deutsche Welle: UNICEF: 20 percent of children in developed countries living in poverty
“…The U.N. children’s agency UNICEF has warned that its report should serve as a ‘wake-up call’ to the high rate of children in rich countries living in relative poverty. The report makes clear that ‘higher incomes do not automatically lead to improved outcomes for all children,’ said Sarah Cook, director of the UNICEF research center Innocenti. Cook called on all governments to take action in eliminating inequality in child welfare…” (6/15).

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WHO Health Emergencies Programme Communications Officer Speaks With Devex About Agency's Incident Management System

Devex: DevExplains: How WHO’s incident management system works
“…One part of [WHO’s new Health Emergencies Programme is the] incident management system, which determines how the aid agency organizes and coordinates its work between its three levels of the organization, partners, and countries needing assistance in their response. … Devex spoke with Wynne Boelt, communications officer for WHO’s Health Emergencies Programme, on the sidelines of the 70th World Health Assembly, to learn more…” (Ravelo, 6/14).

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Editorials and Opinions

Investing In Foreign Aid Critical To U.S. National Security

POLITICO: Memo to Congress: Don’t Cut Foreign Aid
Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Tim Kaine (D-Va.)

“The security of the United States and its people is the first priority of government, and imposes numerous responsibilities on Congress and the executive branch. … Smart intelligence operations are essential to our security. So is adroit diplomacy and U.S. assistance — including humanitarian relief, democracy promotion, and economic development — to further our goals. … Development assistance programs support military and diplomatic efforts to address … crises, and help prevent conditions that lead to political instability and radicalization. … President Donald Trump faces a world fraught with challenges to our interests, not to mention the demands on our conscience posed by the suffering of so many innocent people around the globe. He will need every tool at his disposal to protect our interests and advance our values. Unwise budget cuts to effective, desperately needed assistance programs are a penny-wise and pound-foolish error that will shift even more of the burden for stabilizing the world to our overburdened armed services. Such cuts will make it harder to make America safer. They will deprive the world of the full array of American political and moral leadership when it has never been more needed. We urge the administration and our colleagues in Congress not to make that mistake” (6/15).

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New WHO Director General Faces Several Challenges

Washington Post: The World Health Organization just picked a new leader. These are the challenges he faces.
Joshua Busby, associate professor at the LBJ School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin; Karen Grépin, associate professor in the Department of Health Sciences at Wilfrid Laurier University; Jeremy Youde, fellow and senior lecturer in the Department of International Relations in the Coral Bell School of Asia Pacific Affairs at Australian National University

“…This is a fraught moment in WHO’s history, given the organization’s budget crisis — and criticism during the 2014 Ebola crisis. Can [new WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus] succeed? … The delayed WHO response to the Ebola crisis severely damaged its standing and exposed some long-standing flaws in funding sources and structure. … Tom Frieden, former head of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, laid out the challenge starkly: ‘It’s never a great thing to walk into an organization that’s broke. So that’s a problem.’ … WHO faces a related challenge over how to define its core mission. … In the wake of the Ebola crisis and emerging disease threats such as Zika, rich donor countries want the organization to focus on global health security and pandemic preparedness. During its 70-year history, WHO has performed core functions like coordination and information sharing to address infectious diseases. These roles remain as relevant as ever. Meanwhile, Tedros has suggested that his focus is health systems strengthening and universal health coverage (UHC) … Tedros may be in the impossible position of trying to satisfy too many demands with not nearly enough money. He and WHO will once again be tested…” (6/15).

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From the Global Health Policy Community

Blog Posts Discuss U.S. Secretary Of State Tillerson's Testimonies Before Senate Committees On FY18 State Department Budget Request

Center for Global Development’s “U.S. Development Policy”: Rex Tillerson’s Hearings Before Congress: What Was Said and What CGD Experts Think
Scott Morris, senior fellow and director of the U.S. Development Policy Initiative at CGD; Amanda Glassman, chief operating officer, senior fellow, and Board secretary at CGD; Jeremy Konyndyk, senior policy fellow at CGD; and Forrest Rilling, media relations coordinator at CGD, discuss key points from U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson’s testimonies this week before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs (6/14).

Center for Global Health Policy’s “Science Speaks”: When Senators question Tillerson on global health impacts of State Department cuts, numbers speak louder than words
Antigone Barton, senior editor and writer of “Science Speaks,” discusses Tillerson’s appearance before the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs, during which U.S. senators posed questions on how the administration’s budget request would impact U.S. global health efforts. Barton also highlights the newly released KFF analysis on the impact of potential U.S. global health budget cuts (6/14).

Humanosphere: Tillerson’s ‘less is more’ strategy for foreign aid meets bipartisan skepticism in Senate
Humanosphere correspondent Tom Murphy discusses responses to Tillerson’s testimony before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Tuesday, writing “Critics responded by characterizing the proposal to slash the budget for the State Department and U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) by about 30 percent as ‘reckless’ and ‘divorced from reality.’ Senators also made clear that they do not plan to enact the Trump administration’s proposed level of cuts.” Murphy also highlights the newly released KFF analysis on the impact of potential U.S. global health budget cuts (6/14).

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CGD Blog Post Presents 5 Questions For USAID Administrator Nominee Mark Green

Center for Global Development’s “Views from the Center”: Five Questions (and Answers) for USAID Administrator Nominee Mark Green
Erin Collinson, senior associate for policy outreach at CGD, and Sarah Rose, senior policy analyst at CGD, write, “Ambassador Mark Green — President Trump’s pick to lead the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) — is slated to appear before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee for his nomination hearing on Thursday morning. … Drawing on themes of efficiency, effectiveness, accountability, and results, here are a few questions we’d pose to Ambassador Green (and a few of the things we’d love to hear in response)…” (6/14).

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1 In 6 Older People Experience Some Form Of Abuse, WHO Study Says

WHO: Abuse of older people on the rise — 1 in 6 affected
“Around one in six older people experience some form of abuse, a figure higher than previously estimated and predicted to rise as populations age worldwide. A new study, supported by WHO and published in the Lancet Global Health, has found that almost 16 percent of people aged 60 years and older were subjected to either psychological abuse (11.6 percent), financial abuse (6.8 percent), neglect (4.2 percent), physical abuse (2.6 percent), or sexual abuse (0.9 percent)…” (6/14).

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New Issue Of 'Global Fund News Flash' Available Online

Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria: Global Fund News Flash
The latest issue of the Global Fund News Flash includes a multimedia feature that “tells the story of RISE Young Women’s Clubs that are helping this vulnerable group stay healthy” in South Africa (6/14).

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From the U.S. Government

U.S. Secretary Of State Rex Tillerson Testifies Before House Committees On FY18 Budget Request

U.S. Department of State’s “DipNote”: Secretary Tillerson Speaks Before U.S. House Foreign Affairs and Appropriations Committees on FY 2018 Budget Request
This blog post highlights U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson’s testimony before House committees on the FY18 State Department budget request. The blog post states, “This budget request reflects a commitment to ensure every tax dollar spent is aligned with the department’s and USAID’s missions and critical objectives” (6/14).

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