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Daily Report Global Health Conversations: The QDDR And Global Health

After the State Department released recommendations for how to improve its own effectiveness and that of USAID in last week’s Quadrennial Diplomacy and Development Review (QDDR), the Kaiser Daily Global Health Policy Report’s Jaclyn Schiff spoke with Jennifer Kates, vice president and director of Global Health Policy & HIV at the Kaiser Family Foundation, about the QDDR in relation to U.S. global health efforts.

“It really is calling for an overall new way of doing business in the government,” Kates said of the QDDR. “How USAID and State adapt and change in response to the QDDR will affect global health.”

According to Kates, key elements of the QDDR include the transition of the Global Health Initiative (GHI) to USAID by the end of fiscal year 2012 and the acknowledgement of global health as one of the six core pillars of U.S. development and diplomacy efforts.

“A new development that has not been stated in the past” is the QDDR’s charge that the Secretary of State appoint an executive director to coordinate the GHI and facilitate the transition to USAID, Kates said. She also discussed the benefits and challenges of the GHI ultimately being overseen by USAID and notes that PEPFAR will remain at the State Department, which raises questions of how the programs will be coordinated.

“I think what the QDDR is trying to convey is that we have to have a unified foreign policy,” Kates said. She also highlighted the report’s emphasis on empowering women and girls and discussed the anticipated reduction in reliance on contractors to implement U.S. global health programs (12/21). The full QDDR, a fact sheet and an executive summary are available on the State Department’s website.

This audio interview is part of the Daily Report’s Global Health Conversations series featuring global health thought leaders discussing topical issues pertaining to U.S. policy on global health.

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.