The Global Fund board delegation that represents "Communities Living with AIDS, TB and Malaria" is seeking a person to serve as Communications Focal Point. This position requires one quarter to one half of the chosen person's time, and is unpaid, through costs are paid for attending Global Fund board meetings.
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The shortage of health workers in Africa has become recognized as the most significant constraint to scaling up health services, including for AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria. Countries outside Africa also face significant health workforce challenges. Meeting health workforce needs will require significant funds. The Global Fund is one important possible source for the financial resources required to support human resources.
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.
The Global Fund announced its Fifth Call for Proposals on March 17, as agreed by the board last November.
"The Aidspan Guide to Round 5 Applications to the Global Fund" has just been published. It is accessible at no charge at www.aidspan.org/guides, where three previous Aidspan Guides are already available.
- At least 400 articles in the English language press mentioned the Global Fund during the International AIDS Conference in Bangkok, including a variety of editorials and opinion pieces. Some focused on the Global Fund's progress (and, sometimes, lack of progress) in getting cash to implementing organizations. And several editorials and opinion pieces called for increased commitments to the Fund.
Even among sub-Saharan nations, Kenya has been hard hit by disease - AIDS has left up to 1.5 million dead; TB cases have quintupled in the past decade; and malaria kills some 26,000 children annually. So for Kenya, the Global Fund could have been a magic bullet. Instead, this country's approach to the Fund has produced a string of disappointments.
The US General Accounting Office (GAO) released on May 7 a long-awaited 75-page report on the Global Fund. The views of the report are captured in its title: "Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria Has Advanced in Key Areas, but Difficult Challenges Remain."
The Fund is seeking eleven new members for its 25-person Technical Review Panel (TRP). The TRP is a unique aspect of the Global Fund. Members of the TRP do not represent their countries or even the organizations that normally employ them. They are recruited (and paid) to get together for two intensive weeks of work to review the proposals submitted in each Round.
I am deeply honored to serve as Chair of the Board of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria for 2003. I know that by working together the Board can make a tremendous difference in the fight against AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. It is a grave and weighty task, and I know that the Fund is ready to take it on. I look forward to being an active spokesman and advocate for the Fund.