ABIDJAN, Côte d'Ivoire - The Board of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria today approved a Strategy 2017-2022 to maximize impact, strengthen systems for health, promote and protect human rights and gender equality, and mobilize additional resources.
The Strategy was approved at a two-day meeting graciously hosted by the Government of Côte d'Ivoire, the first time a Global Fund Board meeting was held in Francophone West Africa. His Excellency Daniel Kablan Duncan, Prime Minister of Côte d'Ivoire, opened the meeting and was joined by Honorable Raymonde Goudou Coffie, Minister of Health; Martin Chungong, Secretary General of the Inter-Parliamentary Union; and many other dignitaries.
The Strategy, named "Investing to End Epidemics," sets the groundwork for more effective implementation of health programs, so that partners can reach more people and achieve greater impact. The Global Fund partnership fosters innovative approaches that meet diverse country needs, with the common goal of ending HIV, TB and malaria. For good.
"This strategy embodies a smart, comprehensive and effective vision for global health," said Norbert Hauser, Chair of the Board of the Global Fund. "Our collective work has delivered greater health and created opportunity for millions of people. With this Strategy, we can reach millions more."
Through programs supported by the Global Fund, 17 million lives had been saved by the end of 2014, and the partnership is on track to reach 22 million by the end of 2016. The Global Fund's replenishment in 2016 aims to raise US$13 billion for the 2017-2019 funding cycle, with projections that it would save up to eight million lives with potential economic gains of up to US$290 billion in the years ahead.
The Strategy adopted by the Board emerged from extensive consultations and broad engagement over the past two years. Hundreds of partners participated in strategy discussions at Partnership Forums in 2015 that were convened in Addis Ababa, Bangkok and Buenos Aires, and contributed through an e-Forum that collected views from all over the world.
The new strategy is fully aligned with the Sustainable Development Goals embraced by member states of the United Nations in September 2015, with a holistic and multidisciplinary approach that seeks to reach those most in need, reduce inequalities, and support sustainable transition across the development continuum as countries move toward self-sustainability.
The new strategy underlines the Global Fund's commitment to contribute to building resilient and sustainable systems for health to support national strategies for health and national disease-specific strategic plans in each country. Strengthening data systems, and using existing data more effectively, is a key factor.
The Board meeting also focused on risk management. The Board discussed significant initiatives and measures that have been implemented to improve operational and risk-management processes, and decided that further efforts are needed to do even more.
The Board looks forward to reviewing an action plan that advances risk management systems and processes, with measureable and time-bound objectives. The report is likely to include a focus on strengthening of global and in-country procurement and supply chain systems, which has been identified as a key priority for 2016.
The Board approved an allocation model to effectively deliver on the strategy of increasing impact on countries with the highest burden of disease and least economic capacity, and for key and vulnerable populations who are disproportionately affected by the three diseases.
In addition, the Board approved a policy on Challenging Operating Environments to systematize an innovative and flexible approach to improve impact and risk management in countries with weak governance, poor access to health services, and man-made or natural crises.
The Board approved a new policy on Sustainability, Transitions and Co-financing, to support efforts by countries to expand and sustain programs to achieve lasting impact through domestically funded systems that deliver results.