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In timely and incisive analysis, our experts parse the latest development news and devise practical solutions to new and emerging challenges. Our events convene the top thinkers and doers in global development.
CGD research brings an economic perspective to the global fight against major killers, including HIV, tuberculosis, and malaria. We help governments and international agencies, including the Global Fund, find ways to catalyze development of new, effective drugs, as well as how to make fair decisions about who should get treatment for what disease at what cost—and the implications of those decisions.
At our recent event, “How Can Finance Ministries Support a Sustainable HIV Response?” representatives from PEPFAR and the US Department of Treasury came together to discuss an innovative partnership between them and with finance ministries around the world. The partnership aims to improve the coordination and productivity of resources devoted to combatting HIV/AIDS in low- and middle-income countries, and to strengthen the long-term feasibility of these efforts.
Without PEPFAR, it’s safe to say that almost all of Africa would be stuck near zero HIV treatment coverage. Instead, 49 percent of HIV-infected people were receiving life-saving treatment in 2014, rising to 56 percent by 2015, and the top-performing countries are still gaining ground. This dramatic increase in treatment coverage is a prodigious achievement—and the United States deserves most of the credit. But despite these accomplishments, much more work is needed to reach the end of the epidemic.
Having tried and mostly failed to track what was going on with US Government performance and spending on Ebola, I welcome the GAO’s overview of obligations and disbursements by appropriation account and strategy pillar. Now the scope of this report appears to be narrow, so let’s hope there’s more to come. A performance audit should go beyond the money to look at what actually happened; what organizations, activities and products were funded; what were the results on the outcomes that matter—Ebola transmission, rapid control of Ebola outbreaks; whether second-order economic impacts were mitigated; and how outbreak preparedness has evolved over time.
Zika’s rapid spread has focused media attention on how poorly prepared both rich and less rich countries are for infectious disease outbreaks. And while it seems that we are still flailing, in fact, the international community has been trying to do better for a while. Perhaps the most significant response came in 2014 when the G7 (including the US Government) endorsed the Global Health Security Agenda (GHSA), a partnership of governments and international organizations aiming to accelerate achievement of the core outbreak preparedness and response capacities required by the International Health Regulations.
I set out to better understand the link between ethnic politics and the local response to Ebola, and what I found was stark. There is a clear link between the political prominence of certain areas and their incidence of Ebola: the more political elites that come from a district, the lower its suffering during the Ebola outbreak.