Africa's New Partnership For Sustainable Health Development 'Makes Sense'

With Africa’s “emerging position in the global order, … [a]stute African leaders are striving to ensure that this realignment delivers a new paradigm of partnership for sustainable health development — a partnership that is led by Africa, for Africans, through African-sourced solutions,” UNAIDS Executive Director Michel Sidibe writes in a Huffington Post “Impact Blog” opinion piece. The African Union is taking steps “to reduce the continent’s dependence on foreign solutions and foreign ‘aid’ while adopting and scaling up development solutions that have been proven to work in different African countries, and finding better and more sustainable approaches to financing them,” he states. “It makes a lot of sense to apply such an approach to addressing three killer diseases: AIDS, tuberculosis (TB) and malaria,” he continues, adding that “the overreliance of Africa’s AIDS response on foreign investments, foreign drugs and foreign solutions must be addressed.”

Sidibe says the approach is described in the recently released “Roadmap for Shared Responsibility and Global Solidarity for AIDS, TB and Malaria” (.pdf), which “presents a bold and feasible approach to a number of challenges: diversifying sources of health financing, improving access to medicines through local production and regional market integration and pursuing more effective and equitable health governance that will deliver more evidence-informed responses that are also grounded deeply in human rights.” He concludes, “Remarkable progress has been made, but much remains to be done. Africans are now calling for a new partnership, and they have a roadmap to define it. It is my hope that the world will respond to this call” (7/17).