GLOBAL FUND “VITAL FOR STRONG GLOBAL PUBLIC HEALTH RESULTS”, SAYS INTERNATIONAL REVIEW
Article Number: 4
Progress on indicators is satisfactory, says the Multilateral Organisation Performance Assessment Network, but improvements could be made
ABSTRACT In August 2022, one of the most rigorous reviews for multilateral organizations, the Multilateral Organisation Performance Assessment Network (MOPAN), released an assessment evaluating the Global Fund’s performance against 12 key performance indicators. It identified several indicators as highly satisfactory but also recommended areas for more attention. The Global Fund partnership welcomed the review and feedback to ensure its work remains as effective as possible.
The Multilateral Organisation Performance Assessment Network (MOPAN) is an independent network of 21 members who jointly assess the effectiveness of the major multilateral organizations that they fund. On 31 August of this year it released a report on Global Fund performance. The assessment finds that “the Global Fund has steadily sought ways to improve its performance and mature as an organization, while remaining focused on its core mandate to fight three of the most deadly infectious diseases: HIV, tuberculosis (TB) and malaria”.
MOPAN is one of the most exacting assessments of multilateral organizations and its findings are significant among the international donor community.
What is MOPAN?
The Multilateral Organisation Performance Assessment Network (MOPAN) was launched in 2002 as a network of like-minded donor countries for monitoring the performance of multilateral development organisations at the country level. All members have a common interest in knowing more about the effectiveness of multilateral organisations, through joint assessments of these organisations, exchange of information and expertise in monitoring and evaluation.
MOPAN is an interactive, consensus-based network of members who share a common interest in improving the organisational and development effectiveness of the organisations they fund. Its mission is to strengthen overall development and humanitarian results by improving accountability and promoting dialogue, as well as learning and reform, by generating, analysing, and presenting critical performance information. Every MOPAN member has an equal voice and say in MOPAN’s work.
As of 1 August 2022, the MOPAN Network members are Australia, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, the European Union (observer), Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Korea, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Qatar, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey (observer), the United Kingdom and the United States.
The last review of the Global Fund conducted by MOPAN was in 2015-2016 when it also ranked the organization as satisfactory. Since then, the report notes, the Global Fund has continued to evolve within a changing global health landscape: “Since it was founded 20 years ago, the Global Fund has steadily sought ways to improve its performance and mature as an organisation, while remaining focused on its core mandate to fight the three devastating infectious diseases”.
The MOPAN Assessment of the Global Fund found that:
- The Global Fund’s flexible and evolving operational approach is continually reviewed and facilitates a quick response. This was particularly important during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Thanks to its inclusive partnerships, the Global Fund demonstrates a strong commitment to all stakeholders and promotes consensus and ownership.
- A determined focus on the three diseases has allowed the Global Fund to achieve robust results and make continued progress despite short-, medium- and long-term challenges.
Because of its experience in fighting pandemics, the Global Fund was well placed to play a leadership role when the COVID-19 pandemic occurred. For example, early in the pandemic, the Global Fund collaborated with other global health organizations to take a lead in forming the Access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator or (ACT-Accelerator).
Ambassador Taeho Lee, MOPAN’s institutional lead representing the Republic of Korea, commended the Global Fund for continuously seeking ways to capitalize on its global relevance, including by leading the ACT-Accelerator’s Diagnostic Pillar based on strong partnership with other stakeholders, noting that “The assessment shows that the partnership has successfully managed to keep the balance between maintaining its focus on the three target diseases (HIV, TB, and malaria) and addressing the most imminent challenge, which is the COVID-19 pandemic.”
The Global Fund’s deep commitment to the partnership model was praised, with MOPAN members asserting that this contributed to the Fund being a strong institution with significant influence. The MOPAN assessment results provide an objective reflection of where the Fund as a partnership must focus its efforts to ensure the Fund remains a leader and influencer in global health.
Needing more work
- At the same time, the Global Fund could make more progress in addressing cross-cutting issues such as building resilient and sustainable systems for health (RSSH), gender and human rights, and environment and climate change.
- Also, a cohesive and fully independent evaluation function will be important for moving from simple monitoring to more in-depth learning and understanding from its supported programmes.
- Finally, country ownership and competing stakeholder priorities will be an important part of discussions in the years ahead.
The Global Fund’s response
Peter Sands, the Global Fund’s Executive Director, noted that: “We are committed to putting more effort into the areas identified for improvement, and we have already started that work,” citing the new Strategy for 2023-2028. He said that the Strategy will intensify the Global Fund’s focus on building people-centred and inclusive systems for health. He also said that the Fund’s efforts to tackle health inequities, gender inequalities and human rights barriers to accessing health services, such as the criminalization of key populations, would also address the areas requiring improvement. He noted that the Strategy also incorporates pandemic preparedness and response, and environmental sustainability and climate change.
The Global Fund has already taken steps to strengthen the organization’s monitoring, evaluation and learning systems by developing an overarching monitoring and evaluation framework, creating a new role of Chief Evaluation and Learning Officer, and establishing an Independent Evaluation Panel. While these actions came after the end of the assessment period, the assessment recognized these as moving in the right direction.
“I am confident in the Global Fund’s ability to evolve so as to fully endorse its role of leader ending the three diseases and in achieving universal health coverage by contributing to the global efforts to strengthen health systems”.
Ambassador Stéphanie Seydoux, MOPAN’s institutional lead representing France.
Across the development and humanitarian sectors, protection from sexual exploitation, abuse and harassment (SEAH) has become a priority. Therefore, since 2020, MOPAN has pioneered work to assess organizations’ approaches to SEAH in its reviews. The Global Fund adopted a victim/survivor-centered approach to SEAH in July 2021. The review recognized this development, but it acknowledges that it is too early to assess how effectively it has been applied.