KFF Daily Global Health Policy Report

In The News

G7 Development Ministers Meeting Focused On Women, Girls But No Mention Of Reproductive Rights In Declaration

Devex: No mention of reproductive rights in declarations out of G7 development ministerial
“Official declarations released by the G7 at the conclusion of a three-day development ministerial focused on women and girls — but with no mention of reproductive rights. Instead, the Declaration on Unlocking the Power of Adolescent Girls for Sustainable Development said the G7 countries committed to ‘promoting and protecting adolescent health and well-being, through evidence-based health care and health information.’ … Delegates and observers of the meetings speaking on the condition of anonymity in order to discuss confidential briefings told Devex that the U.S. delegation at the meeting of the seven most advanced economies was responsible for the softer official language in the declarations…” (Welsh, 6/4).

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U.N. SG, UNGA President Call For More Action On TB To Meet 2030 SDG Target

U.N. News: ‘Social drivers’ must be confronted in fight against tuberculosis says U.N. chief
“Winning the fight against tuberculosis requires that ‘social drivers’ of the disease — especially poverty and inequality — are tackled head on, the United Nations secretary general said [Monday], urging greater efforts to provide universal health coverage and combat the growing threat of anti-microbial resistance…” (6/4).

Xinhua News: UNGA president calls for more action to end TB
“President of the U.N. General Assembly Misrolav Lajcak said Monday that more action is needed to ensure the tuberculosis (TB) epidemic is ended by 2030, a deadline set by the U.N. Speaking at a civil society hearing on TB, Lajcak said, ‘We are not on track to meet this SDG (Sustainable Development Goals) target,’ adding the pace of progress has been too slow and global action and investment are far from enough…” (6/4).

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U.K. Cross-Government Aid Strategy Less Transparent, Poverty-Focused Than DFID Spending, Parliamentary Report Says

Devex: U.K. aid ‘brand’ at risk from cross-government funds, says IDC report
“Official development assistance spent outside the Department for International Development — which is set to rise to 30 percent within the next two years — is less transparent, less coherent, and less poverty-focused than aid spent by DFID, a new report from the parliamentary International Development Committee has found. The U.K.’s controversial cross-government aid strategy has seen a rising proportion of aid spent through departments other than DFID. … A lack of clarity within cross-government funds, in particular the Conflict, Stability and Security Fund, risks ‘undermining faith in the U.K. aid brand,’ it said…” (Anders, 6/5).

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DRC Ebola Outbreak Response Builds As More Than 1K People Receive Experimental Vaccine

CIDRAP News: More suspected Ebola cases in DRC as response builds
“In recent days the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) reported a few more suspected Ebola cases, and with lab tests ruling out some earlier cases, the outbreak total grew to 53 cases. Also, the number of people who received the experimental VSV-EBOV vaccine rose steadily, and the DRC’s health minister said over the weekend that all people targeted for immunization in the provincial capital of Mbandaka have now been vaccinated, which includes health workers, contacts of confirmed cases, and contacts of contacts…” (Schnirring, 6/4).

CNN: Detective work, cultural awareness are key to fighting Ebola
“As health care workers battle a deadly Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo, one important tool has been promising in preventing spread of the virus but can be difficult to carry out: contact tracing…” (Howard, 6/5).

MSNBC: Congo begins vaccination drive to control Ebola outbreak
“…Andrea Mitchell is joined by Dr. Vanessa Kerry, the CEO of Seed Global Health — a nonprofit group that sends doctors and nurses to Africa to teach and train local health care professionals…” (Mitchell, 6/4).

Reuters: Medical workers in Congo city finish vaccinating contacts of Ebola patients
“…The VSV-EBOV vaccine, developed by Merck, has been administered to 1,112 people, including 567 in the northwestern city [of Mbandaka]. … There have been no new deaths from Ebola since May 25 and the last confirmed case was recorded on May 29, although health officials say it is too soon to make any definitive pronouncements about the outbreak’s course…” (Mwarabu/Christensen, 6/4).

Xinhua News: WAHO calls for regional preparedness as Ebola hits DR Congo
“Director General of [the] West African Health Organization (WAHO) Stanley Okolo on Monday called on the regional countries to remain alert as the Ebola epidemic resurfaced in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC)…” (6/5).

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WHO Launches Global Action Plan On Physical Activity And Health

U.N. News: Walk, cycle, dance, and play — U.N. health agency recommends new action plan for good health
“… ‘Being active is critical for health. But in our modern world, this is becoming more and more of a challenge, largely because our cities and communities aren’t designed in the right ways,’ said Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO director general, on Monday, launching the WHO ‘Global action plan on physical activity and health 2018-2030: More active people for a healthier world,’ alongside Portuguese Prime Minister António Costa. Girls, women, older adults, poorer people, people with disabilities, the chronically ill, and indigenous people on the margins of society have even fewer opportunities to be active…” (6/4).

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More News In Global Health

Axios: New HIV vaccine test shows promise (O’Reilly, 6/4).

Devex: 400,000 children in DRC’s Kasai region face threat of death by starvation (Roby, 6/5).

Devex: Video: A sugar tax to tackle NCDs? (Root/Mihara, 6/4).

Healio: Left unchecked, global warming may shape future epidemics (Ghizzone, 6/4).

Inside Philanthropy: Dept. of Existential Threats: Who’s Worried About Superbugs? (Karon, 5/31).

NPR: The Lies We Tell About Foreign Aid (Gharib, 6/4).

Smithsonian.com: How Globalization Changed the Way We Fight Disease (Fernandez, 6/4).

U.N. News: South Sudan suffering on ‘almost unimaginable scale,’ warns U.N. relief chief (6/4).

Wall Street Journal: Research Yields Progress Against Lung Cancer (Loftus, 6/4).

Xinhua News: Anti-cholera campaign launched in Sanaa, Yemen (6/4).

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Editorials and Opinions

Health Systems Providing Quality, Reliable, Basic Care Vital To Reducing Maternal Mortality

WBUR: We Know How To Reduce The Number Of Women Who Die In Childbirth. Do We Have The Will?
Ophelia Dahl, co-founder and chair of the board of Partners In Health

“…The reason why some women die in childbirth and others don’t has nothing to do with biology or culture, and everything to do with apathy. We have the tools to reduce maternal mortality, to stop what my colleagues would call ‘stupid deaths,’ especially in poor countries like Sierra Leone. There is no need for high-tech inventions. The need simply is for everyday interventions — such as electricity, sterile birth kits, blood banks, medications to stop hemorrhaging, doctors trained to provide emergency cesarean sections, and nurse anesthetists to assist in this most routine of operations. We need community health workers who know when their neighbors are pregnant so they can accompany them to prenatal checkups, where complications are detected early. And we need waiting homes where expectant mothers, many of whom live far from health facilities, can stay to be near trained professionals when labor begins. What I’m advocating for is not a miracle. It’s a health system that patients can rely on for quality, reliable care. It’s also a system that values mothers and mothering. We need both for humane maternal care — and that’s true from the poorest to the richest nations in the world…” (6/5).

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Multi-Stakeholder Approach To Investing in Women, Girls Critical To Achieving SDGs

EURACTIV: European Development Days: Investing in women and girls
Melanne Verveer, executive director of the Georgetown Institute for Women, Peace, and Security at Georgetown University

“The Sustainable Development Goals include gender equality and women’s empowerment as a distinct goal — and investing in women and girls is recognized as critical for achieving the entire 2030 development agenda. Today we are making progress on this agenda, but not enough. … It will take all of us working together to improve the status of women, to accelerate economic opportunity, and enhance sustainable development. Public-private partnerships are an important instrument to drive progress for women and girls. SDG 17 specifically calls for the adoption of multi-stakeholder approaches to achieve sustainable development. … Governments, multilateral organizations, civil society, and other stakeholders increasingly recognize that women and girls must be a central pillar in global development — one of the most powerful tools for alleviating poverty and improving the human condition. … There can be no sustainable development without gender equality. When women and girls make progress, all of society makes progress. It is time to act on what we know to be effective” (6/5).

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From the Global Health Policy Community

Brookings Senior Fellow Examines Potential Impact Of Funding Delays, Proposed Budget Cuts On U.S. Foreign Aid

Brookings Institution’s “Up Front”: Erratic budget processes threaten U.S. foreign aid
George Ingram, senior fellow for global economy and development at Brookings Institution, discusses the potential impact of funding delays and proposed budget cuts on the U.S. government’s support for foreign assistance programs, writing, “Rescissions, proposed budget cuts, and delayed appropriations sully the reputation of the United States, undermine the effectiveness of U.S. assistance, hinder our intended objectives, and constitute a disservice to our aid workers and to country partners. Policymakers need to recognize these ramifications and return the aid budget to regular order” (6/4).

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UNICEF Executive Director Discusses Situation Of Children Affected By Conflict In Joint Press Briefing

UNICEF: “We are seeing an utter disregard for the protection of children in conflict” — UNICEF Chief
This release highlights UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta H. Fore’s remarks at a joint press briefing with Olof Skoog, permanent representative of Sweden to the U.N. and chair of the Security Council Working Group on Children and Armed Conflict. Fore notes, “What we are seeing around the world is an utter disregard for the protection of children. … UNICEF’s dedicated teams are working to deliver for children, often in extremely complex environments and sometimes at great risk. … But we need access and funds … Most importantly we need peace” (6/4).

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OIG Ensures Global Fund Remains Transparent, Uses Investments Efficiently, Effectively

Friends of the Global Fight: A Strong Inspector General Helps the Global Fund Protect Every Dollar
This blog post discusses the role of the Global Fund Office of the Inspector General (OIG), noting, “By ensuring that the Global Fund remains transparent and independent, its Inspector General ensures that every dollar invested in the Global Fund achieves its maximum efficiency, effectiveness, and impact” (6/4).

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ODI Senior Research Fellow Examines Blended Finance's Potential In World's Poorest Nations

Overseas Development Institute: Can blended finance work for the poorest countries?
Samantha Attridge, senior research fellow at ODI, discusses blended finance for development. Attridge writes, “[Blended finance] continue[s] its vertiginous ascent to the top of the ‘billions to trillions’ agenda but with very little nuance about its potential, when and where it can work — and when and where it won’t. There are concerns that it won’t deliver for the poorest countries. Estimates and analysis coalesce around three broad trends…” (6/1).

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CSIS Releases June 2018 Issue Of Global Health Policy Center Monthly Newsletter

Center for Strategic & International Studies: Global Health Policy Center Monthly Newsletter: June 2018
In the June 2018 CSIS Global Health Policy Center Newsletter, J. Stephen Morrison, senior vice president and director of the CSIS Global Health Policy Center, highlights podcasts and past and upcoming events hosted by CSIS. The newsletter includes links to an event at CSIS on the current state of pandemic preparedness policy and practice, as well as a podcast hosted by Morrison, who speaks with Kee B. Park, Paul Farmer global surgery scholar at Harvard Medical School and director of North Korea programs for the Korean American Medical Association, about “his latest visit to North Korea, the potential impacts of economic sanctions on humanitarian engagement, and the operating environment that influenced the Global Fund’s decision to close its tuberculosis and malaria programs” (June 2018).

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Initiation Of HIV Treatment Upon Diagnosis Significantly Reduces Risk Of Treatment Failure, Drop Out, Study Shows

IDSA’s “Science Speaks”: Starting HIV treatment at diagnosis slashes drop out, drug failure rates, China study finds
Antigone Barton, senior editor and writer of “Science Speaks,” discusses findings from a study led by Yan Zhao and Zunyou Wu of the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention on HIV treatment initiation at diagnosis. Barton notes, “Patients diagnosed with HIV who started antiretroviral treatment within 30 days had significantly lower rates of dropping out of treatment, and higher rates [of] successful treatment, than those who started later … The findings on the benefits of immediate treatment upon diagnosis are important, the authors note, at a time when too few patients gain the benefits of ‘early’ treatment” (6/1).

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AIDS 2018 Online Program Now Available

AIDS 2018: AIDS 2018 Online Conference Programme
According to a release, “The 22nd International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2018) program is now online, featuring over 500 sessions and activities. The online conference program includes interactive features that will allow delegates to view topic-focused road maps and build a personalized itinerary of conference and abstract-driven sessions, satellite symposia, pre-conferences, exhibitors, and Global Village & Youth Program activities” (6/4).

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