The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria has announced two grants totaling more than $64 million over three years in support of efforts in the Republic of the Congo to strengthen prevention and treatment services and build resilient and sustainable health systems.
One grant is aimed at significantly increasing the number of people who are aware of their HIV-positive status and expanding access to lifesaving antiretroviral therapy, especially for pregnant women. To be implemented by the United Nations Development Programme, the grant also will fund efforts to boost the national TB response, with the goal of increasing notification of new cases and reaching a 90 percent treatment success rate by 2023, in line with the World Health Organization's End TB Strategy, as well as support efforts to improve treatment success for multidrug-resistant TB patients.
A second grant focused on preventing malaria, to be implemented by Catholic Relief Services, will support the government's goal to distribute 3.5 million mosquito nets by 2023 and expand access to quality malaria diagnostics and treatment tools. Funding for the 2021-23 implementation period for the Republic of the Congo — where twenty-six thousand people living with HIV currently receive antiretroviral therapy and twelve thousand patients are tested and treated for TB a year — is nearly double that of the previous three-year allocation.
"This is a critical time for the Republic of the Congo, as the COVID-19 pandemic threatens to reverse the hard-won gains we have made on health and development in recent years," said UNDP administrator Achim Steiner. "The Global Fund grants will play a pivotal role in supporting the Ministry of Health to build a resilient and sustainable health system in the Republic of the Congo and help people access the vital services they need."