The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria has announced two-year grants totaling $1.7 billion for programs that combat the three diseases — a $1 billion drop since 2008.
In its tenth funding cycle, the Global Fund awarded seventy-nine grants, including $732 million to combat HIV and AIDS, $574 million for malaria, $299 million for tuberculosis, and $128 million for strengthening health systems. "This funding will allow us to reach millions of additional people with prevention, treatment, and care," said the Global Fund chairman and Ethiopian Health Minister Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. "It shows that even in hard economic times, we can continue to expand the fight against the three diseases."
Since its establishment in 2002, the Global Fund has awarded $21.7 billion for programs in 150 countries. However, the latest funding falls short of the $2.4 billion it awarded in 2009 and the $2.75 billion it awarded in 2008.
In an effort to boost funding, the AIDS Healthcare Foundation has called on donor nations to increase their contributions. In late November, AHF spearheaded simultaneous protests in Washington, D.C., and Los Angeles, during which they accused China of misusing the Global Fund. According to the AHF, China has received nearly $1 billion from the fund over the past decade, while contributing $16 million.
"The Chinese government should be showing more leadership on HIV/AIDS than it has over the past decade and it should be shouldering far greater financial responsibility in helping to combat the global AIDS epidemic," said AHF president Michael Weinstein at the Los Angeles protest. "As one of the largest recipients of Global Fund money, China — [the second-largest] economy in the world — is taking desperately needed resources away from countries with far greater need. Through these protests...we are urging the Chinese government to 'give more and take less' from the Global Fund."