KFF Daily Global Health Policy Report

In The News

Devex Examines PEPFAR's Changing Business Model, Country Operational Plans

Devex: Interactive: Dissecting PEPFAR’s Country Operational Plans
“…In the past 16 years, PEPFAR has changed and evolved as both politics and the HIV epidemic have shifted. In recent months, as the Trump administration has sought to exert greater influence over U.S. global health policy, the initiative has faced new demands and challenges. … To help understand PEPFAR’s evolving business model, Devex digs into the available data to uncover key issues and trends shaping PEPFAR activities in Nigeria and Zambia…” (Wisenberger, 5/31).

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International Donors Pledge $1.2B Of $3.2B Needed To Help Mozambique Recovery From Cyclones

Devex: Mozambique: Donor pledges for cyclone recovery fall short
“…In an effort to mobilize funds for the longer-term rebuilding of Mozambique, the government held a donor’s pledging conference in Beira over the weekend, aiming to raise $3.2 billion for ‘building back better and disaster risk reduction to ensure future resilience.’ The funding goal was calculated through the post-disaster needs assessment, with reconstruction efforts expected to focus on restoring productivity, social services, and infrastructure in seven provinces, according to the United Nations…” (Jerving, 6/3).

Reuters: Donors pledge $1.2 billion to rebuild Mozambique after cyclones: U.N.
“International donors pledged to contribute $1.2 billion to help rebuild areas and infrastructure destroyed by cyclones Kenneth and Idai in Mozambique, according to the United Nations, less than half the amount the government says is needed…” (6/2).

U.N. News: International partners pledge $1.2 billion to help cyclone-hit Mozambique recover, ‘build back better’
“…The powerful tropical cyclones, which struck Mozambique in quick succession this past March and April respectively, killed hundreds and impacted close to two million. … Sending warm greetings to the conference on Saturday, United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres said in a message that he was certain he shared with all a deep sense of distress at the loss of life, the devastation, and the suffering caused by the deadly cyclones…” (6/2).

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WHO Data Show Children Missing Out On Ebola Treatment In DRC; More Effort Needed To Respond To Outbreak, Experts Say

CIDRAP News: New data show gaps in Ebola treatment for young kids
“A new World Health Organization (WHO) analysis of Ebola infections in children under 5 years old in the Democratic Republic of the Congo’s (DRC’s) outbreak found that parents often avoid taking them to Ebola treatment centers and that the youngsters are less likely than other groups to be added to contact tracing lists…” (Schnirring, 5/31).

Homeland Preparedness News: Ongoing DRC Ebola outbreak demands immediate response, WHO reports
“Representatives of the World Health Organization (WHO) stated at the 72nd World Health Assembly [last] week that continued breakdowns in communication, data, and planning are hindering an effective response to the ongoing Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo…” (Galford, 5/31).

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WHO's Executive Board Considers Proposal To Create Separate Annual Forum For Non-State Actors

Health Policy Watch: WHO’s EB Considers New Ways To Work With NGOs — Some Countries Criticise Activists’ Role At WHA 72
“In the wake of a World Health Assembly that became a focus of intense activist and social media attention over a WHO resolution on medicines price transparency, member states are now looking at new rules for shaping involvement of NGOs and other ‘non-state actors’ at public WHO meetings. On Wednesday, a proposal for revising procedures on the Involvement of Non-State Actors (NSAs) in meetings like the World Health Assembly (WHA) was the focus of an initial review at the 145th WHO Executive Board (EB) session. … The WHO report, still under development, suggests the creation of a separate, annual ‘World Health Forum’ to provide a dedicated venue for interactions between member states and non-state actors — while curtailing their formal involvement in the WHA somewhat…” (Fletcher, 5/30).

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WHO Team In Pakistan To Investigate HIV Outbreak, Provide Testing, Treatment, Counseling Expertise

The BMJ: WHO teams arrive in Pakistan to establish source of HIV infections
“World Health Organization officials have arrived in Pakistan to try to establish how more than 700 people, many of them children, have become infected with HIV in the past 40 days…” (Yusufzai, 5/31).

Reuters: ‘How can she have HIV?’: Pakistan town struggles with surge in infections
“…Health officials suspect the outbreak is linked to reused syringes and needles and improperly screened blood transfusions…” (Hassan, 5/31).

Xinhua News: WHO investigates HIV outbreak in southwest Pakistan
“…The team, which arrived in the country on Tuesday, will try to ascertain the source of the outbreak and control it, as well as provide its expertise in the areas of HIV testing, pediatric HIV treatment, and family counseling, said local reports quoting health officials…” (6/1).

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Drug Manufacturers Step In To Fill Gap In Rotavirus Vaccine Supply For West Africa After Merck Ends Long-Term Agreement

NPR: It Looked As Though Millions Of Babies Would Miss Out On A Lifesaving Vaccine
“…As NPR reported in November, the pharmaceutical giant Merck & Co. Inc. announced it was ending a long-term agreement to supply its rotavirus vaccine, RotaTeq, at a reduced price to families in four West African countries. At the same time, the company began selling the vaccine in China, for more than 12 times the price. Merck’s decision meant that more than 2 million babies were at risk of missing the vaccine, health experts told NPR. … Now the situation has changed — for the good. After NPR broke the news of Merck’s pullout, other vaccine manufacturers stepped up to fill in the gap…” (Doucleff, 5/31).

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Devex Launches 'Improving Nutrition' Focus Area With Article, Interview

Devex: Improving Nutrition
“This focus area, powered by DSM, is exploring innovative solutions to improve nutrition, tackle malnutrition, and influence policies and funding…” (6/3).

Devex: Malnutrition, a global problem in search of global solutions
“…[N]o country is spared from the many forms that malnutrition can take. … Increasingly, organizations working in the sector have recognized that malnutrition requires multisectoral solutions. It is a health issue, but it cannot be solved without collaboration from various allied sectors including agriculture, the food industry, sanitation, finance, and gender development…” (Byatnal, 6/3).

Devex: Q&A: The need for an affordable nutrition revolution
“Nutrition is one of the best investments to make in the development sector. That is according to Yannick Foing, global lead of partner engagement in the nutrition improvement unit at DSM, a science based-multinational involved in nutrition, health, and sustainable living. … Speaking to Devex, Foing explained why tackling hunger such a priority investment to make, why food fortification is one of the best solutions available, and why it’s time for an affordable nutrition revolution…” (6/3).

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More News In Global Health

Devex: In Pakistan, attacks on polio workers stop vaccination drive (Liuhto, 6/3).

Devex: Q&A: NORCAP’s executive director on why ‘we have to demystify’ gender-based violence (Lieberman, 6/3).

Forbes: Why Bill Gates Partners With Rotary To Eradicate Polio (Thorpe, 5/31).

The Guardian: Not one single country set to achieve gender equality by 2030 (Ford, 6/3).

Health Policy Watch: WHO & U.N. Women Launch RESPECT — Framework To Prevent Violence Against Women (Fletcher, 5/29).

NPR: We Asked, You Answered: Are Fly-In Medical Missions Helpful Or Harmful? (Silver, 6/2).

PBS NewsHour: 4 ways groups are making period care easier and more equitable (Vinopal, 5/31).

U.N. News: World Food Programme accesses Yemeni frontline district for first time since conflict began (5/31).

U.N. News: On the Global Day of Parents, UNICEF is urging support for parents to give children ‘the best start in life’ (6/1).

Vancouver Sun: Vancouver hosts huge international conference on women’s rights and health (Lazaruk, 5/31).

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Editorials and Opinions

Sustainable Water Management Critical To Preserving Global Biodiversity

Inter Press Service: We Can’t Halt Extinctions Unless We Protect Water
Claudia Sadoff, director general at International Water Management Institute (IWMI)

“Global biodiversity loss has reached critical levels. One million species of plants and animals are now estimated to be at risk of extinction. … Countries would do well to consider this: our ability to preserve species hinges to a great extent on the actions we take to protect freshwater ecosystems. Safeguarding water for the environment is critical for biodiversity and for people. … A key approach for reversing this trend centers on ensuring that water continues to flow in a way that will sustain aquatic ecosystems, thereby supporting populations, economies, sustainable livelihoods, and well-being. … This means maintaining the right quality, quantity, and timing of water flows — which scientists call ‘environmental flows,’ or ‘E-flows’ for short. … Too much of our biodiversity depends on water for us to overlook sustainable water management as a key part of the solution to species extinction. The time has come for a more concerted effort to stem the loss of aquatic ecosystems and of the myriad species that inhabit them” (5/31).

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Attacks Against Hospitals In Syria Represent 'Most Repellent Aspects Of Modern Warfare'

New York Times: In Syria, Even the Hospitals Are Not Safe
Janine di Giovanni, 2019 Guggenheim fellow and senior fellow at the Jackson Institute at Yale

“…[Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s] campaign against hospitals is not just inhumane — it represents one of the most repellent aspects of modern warfare. Hospitals were once off limits; even in conflicts where the international laws of war were routinely flouted, medical facilities were spared. That has changed. Governments increasingly turn on civilians, and hospitals and medical workers are being deliberately targeted in an effort to silence them. Doctors are tortured and killed. Health care workers have been robbed, looted, beaten, and murdered in Central African Republic, Congo, Lebanon, and Myanmar. … [I]n Syria, hospitals are a tool of war. … This means that hospitals cannot treat the sick or dying. It means people with chronic illness have no care. No maternity clinics or diagnostic labs. … What explains such an extensive and cruel campaign? In President Assad’s mind, somewhere along the line, ‘opposition’ became a synonym for ‘civilians,’ many of whom don’t support either side but just want to stay alive. The most threatening way you can terrorize a population is to bomb hospitals and kill doctors. And by killing doctors, who are often the community leaders, you can break down society faster and force surrender quicker. … Nothing and no one is ever safe in Syria … Not even hospitals” (6/3).

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From the Global Health Policy Community

HIV Epidemic Response Ambassadors Meet With Members Of U.S. Congress To Advocate For Full Funding Of Global Fund

Friends of the Global Fight Against AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria: Empowering women and girls in the fight against HIV
Sarah Hollis, senior communications manager at Friends of the Global Fight, highlights the advocacy work of two African women affected by HIV, noting, “As HIV Epidemic Response (HER) Ambassadors, Martha and Sibu work to empower and inspire the next generation of female activists in the fight against HIV. Earlier this month, they traveled to D.C. to use their voices and their stories to meet with members of Congress and advocate for life-saving HIV treatment and prevention programs. … While in D.C., Martha and Sibu participated in 14 Hill meetings where they spoke about the life saving work of the Global Fund and the need for stepped-up funding for the fight against AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria” (5/31).

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Takeda Pharmaceutical Makes First Private Sector Pledge To Global Fund's 6th Replenishment

Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria: Takeda Makes First Private Sector Pledge for Global Fund Replenishment
“Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited today became the first private sector company to announce a financial commitment to the Global Fund’s Sixth Replenishment. The new pledge, consisting of JP ¥ 1 billion (approximately US$9 million) over five years, builds on Takeda’s previous contribution to the Global Fund. Takeda, a leading global pharmaceutical company headquartered in Japan, intends to support the improvement of maternal and child health by integrating quality HIV, tuberculosis, and malaria services in antenatal and postnatal care in several countries in Africa…” (6/3).

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U.S. Officials Discuss Approaches To Addressing Antibiotic Resistance

Pew Charitable Trusts: How Federal Agencies Address Superbugs
Allan Coukell, senior director of health programs at Pew, discusses the threat of antibiotic resistance and highlights several previously published Pew articles on U.S. efforts to address it. Coukell writes, “In the following Q&As, leaders from federal agencies key to U.S. efforts to combat antibiotic-resistant bacteria weigh in on this pressing public health issue, what they’re doing to address it, and what they believe needs to be done to win the war against superbugs” (5/31).

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Norway Donates NOK 600M To IFFIm To Support CEPI's Vaccine Development Efforts

Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance: Kingdom of Norway contributes NOK 600 million to IFFIm
“The Kingdom of Norway has agreed to donate NOK 600 million to the International Finance Facility for Immunisation (IFFIm). The donation is intended to support the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovation (CEPI). In a novel arrangement approved by Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, IFFIm is planning to issue bonds on international capital markets, backed by the donation from Norway, which hosts CEPI. … CEPI’s immediate mandate is to develop vaccines for six diseases with outbreak potential: Nipah Virus, Lassa Fever, Disease X, Rift Valley fever, Chikungunya, and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS). CEPI is coordinating the development of these new vaccines and will eventually make them available at affordable prices to low-income countries disproportionately affected by these epidemics…” (5/29).

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FT Health Discusses Health Classification Of Tobacco, Features Interview With Unitaid Executive Director

FT Health: Time to reclassify tobacco?
The latest issue of the Financial Times’ weekly global health newsletter discusses the global burden of smoking and highlights a BMJ article suggesting tobacco should be classified as a non-communicable disease. The newsletter also features an interview with Lelio Marmora, executive director of Unitaid, as well as provides a roundup of global health-related news stories (Jack/Dodd, 5/31).

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