The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria has announced a new strategic framework designed to maximize its impact, strengthen global health systems, promote and protect human rights, and mobilize additional resources to the fight against AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria, and other diseases. The fund also announced a three-year, $10.5 million grant to the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) to address human rights barriers faced by vulnerable communities in Africa and to facilitate improved access to lifesaving health care.
During a recent board meeting that included Partnership Forums in Addis Ababa, Bangkok, and Buenos Aires, the Global Fund's trustees agreed to prioritize innovative approaches that reach more people and achieve greater impact. The new strategic framework, which is fully aligned with the Sustainable Development Goals embraced by UN member states in September and acknowledges the need to strengthen global and in-country procurement and supply chains, underlines the Global Fund's commitment to building resilient and sustainable health systems as well as disease-specific strategic plans in individual countries.
"The strategic framework shows considerable progress on human rights, as well as the commitment of the Global Fund to demonstrate investments in women and girls," said Rico Gustav, alternate board member of the fund's Communities Delegation. "Looking forward, we need an allocation methodology aligned with the strategic framework for the impacts to translate into saving lives."
To that end, UNDP will collaborate with four African civil society organizations — the AIDS and Rights Alliance for Southern Africa (ARASA), ENDA Santé in Senegal, KELIN in Kenya, and the Southern African Litigation Centre (SALC) — to strengthen laws and policies aimed at improving access to health care and reducing the impact of HIV and TB on vulnerable, disenfranchised populations in Botswana, Côte d'Ivoire, Kenya, Malawi, Nigeria, Senegal, the Seychelles, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zambia.
"The right to health means that each and every person has the right to the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health," said UNDP administrator Helen Clark. "Together we need to support countries to implement laws and policies grounded in evidence and human rights in order to reduce stigma, safeguard dignity, and ensure access to essential health services for all. Punitive laws and practices impeding effective HIV and TB responses need to be abolished."