Global Fund Must Resolve Leadership, Governance Issues By End Of 2012

“Good news about the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria has been sorely lacking these past few years as the organization has faced corruption allegations, financial woes, and internal reform,” a Lancet editorial states. “Yet, despite these challenging times, the Fund remains operational and continues its important work,” it writes, adding, “Last week, it announced that its Board had approved 45 new two-year grants, from 37 countries, totaling $419.2 million.” Noting “[t]he approved projects were part of the Fund’s Transitional Funding Mechanism, established in November 2011 to ensure that essential programs did not face disruption at a time when there was uncertainty about availability of resources,” the editorial continues, “The mechanism is commendable and the funding news immensely welcome.”

“However, the continued financing of such projects — i.e., the survival of the Fund — remains at risk,” the editorial states. “It needs to enter a phase of stabilization,” it continues, writing, “Two issues must be addressed for this to happen.” “First, the Fund needs to establish strong leadership,” it writes, noting “Gabriel Jaramillo, general manager of the Global Fund, has been heading the organization since the departure of Michel Kazatchkine as executive director in March,” but “this is an interim appointment.” It continues, “Second, the Fund needs to re-establish the confidence of donors, which has steadily eroded over the past few years.” The editorial concludes, “The Global Fund should seek to resolve these leadership and governance issues, by the end of 2012 at the latest. Its goal must be to secure its future and that of the vital health programs it delivers” (9/8).