The cancellation of Round 11 by the Global Fund has had a significant impact on programmes to fight AIDS, TB and malaria including, in particular, programmes being implemented by civil society organisations (CSOs). Programme scale-up and even some essential life-saving interventions that were planned by countries were halted.
TAC has published details of the theft
Editor's Note: This article contains information on a form of fraud that could occur in organisations that have not put adequate accounting safeguards in place.
The Global Fund Board has decided that any country whose economy is classified as upper-middle-income, and that had a high enough disease burden to be eligible to apply for Round 6 HIV/AIDS grants, will also be eligible to apply in Round 7. As a result, South Africa, Botswana and Equatorial Guinea will not be excluded from Round 7 eligibility as they would have been if this ruling had not been made.
The 400 participants at the Global Fund's Partnership Forum in July 2006 in Durban, South Africa, made recommendations of two main kinds: strategic, and operational. The strategic recommendations were reported in GFO Issue 61. (See www.aidspan.org/gfo.) Now, in this issue, we summarize the operational recommendations.
Over 400 people from 118 countries attended the Global Fund's second Partnership Forum on 1-3 July 2006 in Durban, South Africa. Some of the most significant recommendations to emerge called for the possible use of programme-based rather than Round-based funding; making technical assistance more efficient; re-thinking the role of Local Fund Agents (LFAs); and fixing procurement and supply management bottlenecks.
A half-day was set aside at this week's Partnership Forum in Durban for skills building. In ten separate small group sessions, participants shared their experiences concerning what was working well. The following is a summary of some of the lessons learned:
Effective implementation of grants:
In a recently-completed survey about the Global Fund, recipient governments had a high opinion of the Fund, but multilaterals agencies were much less sure. In addition, recipient governments ranked their own partnerships with civil society very high, yet civil society gave a much lower ranking to the same relationship. And major concerns were raised regarding the provision of technical assistance by partners.
Representatives of over twenty donor governments met in Durban yesterday and today for a Mid-Term Review of the first "Replenishment" period of the Global Fund, covering 2006-7. The primary purpose of the meeting was for donors to receive presentations from the Secretariat regarding the Fund's progress thus far.
On 14 April, the Global Fund signed its final Round 1 grant agreement. The $10 million HIV grant to Zimbabwe was originally approved three years ago.
Two Round 2 grant agreements have not yet been signed, two and a quarter years after approval. These are with Malawi, for malaria, and with South Africa, for HIV/TB.
India has the world's largest number of HIV-infected people, Global Fund Executive Director Richard Feachem said during a visit to India last month.
According to UN data, the number of people with HIV in India is 5.1 million, behind South Africa with 5.6 million. But, "I don't believe in the official statistics. India is already in first place," Feachem said.