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This article provides a summary of the main decisions made by the Global Fund Board at its 38th meeting in Geneva, Switzerland on 14-15 November 2017.


The Board’s Implementer Group called on donors to follow the example of Japan and contribute funding for the people of Venezuela through an existing funding mechanism – the Strategic Fund managed by the Pan American Health Organization. The group also called on the Global Fund to continue to explore concrete mechanisms to support efforts to address this unprecedented health crisis, and to develop a more proactive and effective approach to countries in crisis.


The Strategy Committee has been reviewing the current Eligibility Policy with a view to proposing a revised policy to the Board in May 2018. The committee prepared a paper for the Board meeting just completed in which it provided its current thinking on key provisions of the policy. The committee favors keeping GNI per capita to measure income. And it believes that emergency funding for ineligible countries (such as Venezuela) should be addressed outside the policy.


The Board has been wrestling for some time with how best to accommodate new public donors on a Board that, in terms of voting members, is delicately balanced between a donor bloc and an implementers bloc. As an interim measure, the Board has established a non-voting seat for new public donors. Efforts to find a longer-term solution will continue.


The Secretariat’s semi-annual report on the implementation of the Global Fund Strategy 2017-2022 documents significant progress on many fronts. However, it also notes that timelines and resources have been squeezed in a year where record numbers of funding requests were reviewed and then massaged in grant-making. This article reports on progress made under the first of the four strategic objectives – “Maximize impact against the diseases.” We will report on progress in implementing activities under other strategic objectives in future issues.


The $312.0 million operating expenses budget for 2018 approved by the Global Fund Board includes a one-time cost of $12.0 million for the planned move of the Fund’s offices to the Global Health Campus in Geneva in early 2018. The Board asked the Secretariat to do a comprehensive review of the 2019 operating expenses budget in an effort to identify savings to offset the one-time expense.


The Technical Review Panel has prepared a report on the funding requests it reviewed in Windows 1 and 2 of the current allocation period. The TRP assessed 72 program continuation requests, 38 tailored requests and 35 full review requests. This article summarizes the TRP’s general observations.


We need to work with the OIG more on agreed management actions to try to make the timelines and deliverables more realistic, Marijke Wijnroks says in the Annual Report of the Interim Executive Director 2017, prepared for the Board meeting just concluded in Geneva, Switzerland. This article summarizes what Wijnroks said about AMAs and about supply chain transformation; grant-making; “Fit for the Future”; Gavi and the Global Health Campus; and the transition to the new E.D., Peter Sands.


The Global Fund went into the regional consultations on CCMs talking about a differentiated approach based on country size and operational context. They came out of the consultations describing the emergence of three CCM maturity levels – Basic Governance, Program Oversight and Strategic Engagement. The goal is still to have a CCM Evolution Plan ready for the Board’s 39th meeting in May 2018.

10: NEWS

Almost all of the targets for the 2017-2022 Key Performance Indicator Framework have now been approved, providing the Global Fund with a full set of targets against which to measure its work for the next few years.

11: NEWS

Striking the right balance between fiduciary and program risk is a major challenge for the Global Fund, the Office of the Inspector General says in its semi-annual progress report. Nevertheless, the OIG noted significant progress at both Secretariat and country levels. The OIG also provided information on its 2018 work plan and on the status of agreed management actions.

12: NEWS

In its report to the Board, the Technical Evaluation Reference Group provides updates on two key initiatives: the TERG’s Strategic Review 2017 and the launch of prospective country evaluations. Of particular interest: In future, the new TERG Documents Procedure, adopted by the Strategy Committee in October, will result in many TERG reports being made public.