Global Fund Explains New Funding Model

Participants at the just ended Southern and Eastern Africa Regional Meeting on the Global Fund’s new funding model have committed to target and ensure robust participation of women and adolescents in designing their plans, as well as implementing gender responsive programmes in the fight against HIVAIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. The participants who hailed from Angola, Botswana, Comoros, Eritrea, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Namibia, Rwanda, South Sudan and Swaziland converged in Windhoek for four days to deliberate on the Global Fund’s new funding model. Part of the meeting was to make participants understand how their respective countries can access money from the Global Fund for the fight against the three diseases.

The Global Fund has made available US$1.7 million (about N$18 million) to the twelve countries for a three year period. Speaking at a media briefing on Wednesday evening, Cynthia Mwase, the Southern and Easter Africa Regional Manager of the Global Fund stressed the importance for these countries to make a significant difference within the next three years in the fight against HIVAIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. “In the last decade we learnt what worked and we want to make sure we use what works in fighting these diseases. But, there are also lessons on what did not work,” she said. “We want to focus on micro-epidemics. We didn’t adequately focus on girls and women, men having sex with men, migrant workers and prisoners. Those people need to be focused on and we need to make sure that in the next three years we make a dent and move the needle on the three diseases,” she said. Meanwhile, countries applying for assistance from the Global Fund will henceforth be allocated funds based on the burden of diseases in their countries, explained Mark Edington, the Head of the Grant Management Division of the Global Fund Secretariat. Edington said countries should understand where disease burdens are, since without that there would not be any effective interventions. Meanwhile, the participants also committed to designing plans and programmes that target and ensure the participation of all key affected and vulnerable populations disproportionately affected by HIVAIDS, tuberculosis and malaria and ensuring that human rights are addressed as a central tenet of programme development, implementation and evaluation.

Also, they agreed to promote and ensure robust country dialogue – the continuous consultation and inclusive discussion among all relevant stakeholders in implementing Global Fund supported projects in order to achieve the best possible outcomes in the response to HIVAIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. They further agreed to use all resources available, all tools and epidemiological intelligence accessible to design plans and implement programmes that significantly reduce new infections in HIV, tuberculosis and malaria.

A call also went out for countries to increase the levels of domestic finances invested by governments in the fight against HIVAIDS, tuberculosis and malaria, as well as good governance in the use of funds. Dr Naftali Hamata, the Special Aisor to the Minister of Health and Social Services, Dr Richard Kamwi urged participants at the close of the four-day meeting to undertake efforts to engage their respective governments to increase the level of domestic finances invested in the fight against the three diseases. “It is the best way to ensure sustainability of the gains we have made against these diseases in the last decade,” said Hamata, who delivered a statement on behalf of Kamwi. The meeting started on Sunday and ended on Wednesday evening.

Source : New Era