International Community Should Protect Global Health Cooperation For Procurement In ‘Post-Aid World’

Devex: Opinion: Protecting hard-won global health gains in a ‘post-aid’ world
Janeen Madan Keller, senior policy analyst and assistant director of global health, and Kalipso Chalkidou, director of global health policy and senior fellow, both at the Center for Global Development

“Transitioning away from donor aid is global development good news. Countries are growing wealthier and increasingly self-sufficient. But within this broader success story, withdrawal of donor support for procuring high-quality medicines, diagnostics, and devices threatens to leave middle-income countries in the lurch. … If we want to ensure universal access to lifesaving health products, the transition from current global health mechanisms — the so-called ‘end of aid’ — cannot be the end of global health cooperation. Instead, global health institutions must sustain, and possibly expand, global cooperation for procurement with an evolving toolkit tailored to the changing context. At the global and regional levels, new and expanded pooled procurement mechanisms can help counter the perverse effects of fragmentation, while donor support for information-sharing, market intelligence, and e-platforms can equip public purchasers with greater visibility into product quality and pricing. Finally, even after countries have transitioned from external aid, donors should consider continued subsidies for specific products that have important positive externalities or that are marginally cost-effective. By reimagining global cooperation for procurement, we can protect hard-won gains and accelerate progress in global health — even in a ‘post-aid’ world” (6/17).

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