9 July 2002
FUND HEAD VOWS TO GET MORE MONEY FLOWING TO EFFECTIVE
Fund Announces Exponential Increase in ARV Drugs
for Africa From First Round of Grants
AIDS CONFERENCE -- Characterizing his organization as
a modern device marking a new era of global action, Dr.
Richard Feachem, incoming Executive Director of the
Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria, vowed today that his
main priority will be to rapidly increase the flow of donor
resources to the many public and non-governmental health
services that are poised to deliver dramatic results measured
in lives saved, disease strengthened.
personally vow to make the Fund a modern, effective
tool for delivering maximum impact with funds provided by
donors, scaling up financial support to all channels - both
public and private - that are successful in addressing this
crisis," Feachem told delegates at the 14th International
AIDS Conference in Barcelona, one week prior to assuming
his role as the Fund's first Executive Director.
"To succeed, the amount of money spent must be dramatically
increased. And for funding to increase, we must continue
to demonstrate that we can quickly and strategically get
these funds to programs that are making an impact."
a statement issued late Monday, the Fund announced
that its initial multiyear grants will make it possible
for six times as many people in Africa to receive anti-retroviral
(ARV) treatment over the next five years. This catalytic
start signals the substantial contributions to both prevention
and treatment programmes that the Fund will make
in future rounds as additional donor resources are provided.
Moreover, it demonstrates that countries are ready for much
anticipated that a far greater number of high-quality proposals
will be submitted during the second round, just announced
on 2 July. During the first round, more than US$ 5 billion
was requested from the Fund for a five-year period
through over 300 proposals. 58 separate proposals from 40
countries totaling US$ 1.6 billion over five years were
approved. US$ 616 million was committed for disbursement
over the next two years. The rapid first round was completed
in less than three months, from the call for proposals to
the awarding of grants. Twice the time is being provided
for the preparation and review of proposals during the second
billions more will be required quickly to implement the
high-quality proposals that we anticipate receiving during
the next twelve months," said Feachem. "Without
rapid and substantial increases in financial support for
the Fund, it will not be possible to support the
most worthy of these plans."
to Feachem, it is not enough for leaders of governments
and civil society to only set targets and establish a more
coordinated funding mechanism, they must also "match
their promises with pounds, declarations with dollars, and
commitments with cash."
intend to ensure that the Fund is the innovative,
transparent, results-oriented mechanism that world governments,
civil society and leaders such Kofi Annan and Dr Gro Harlem
Brundtland called for," said Feachem. "But for
us to succeed, all partners must fulfill their commitments
and live up to their promises."
reminded delegates that G8 and G77 leaders pledged two years
ago to cut TB and malaria deaths in half and reduce HIV
infections among young people by 25% by the year 2010. That
same year, donors and the governments of countries most
severely affected by tuberculosis agreed to a plan to triple
the number of people cured by the effective DOTS treatment
strategy. Also that year, African heads pledged to drop
taxes and tariffs on imported mosquito nets that are essential
for controlling malaria. Yet, according to Feachem, much
remains to be done in meeting these pledges.
of us has an important role to play; whether it is in providing
quality health services, mobilizing and informing communities,
offering financial assistance, developing new tools, protecting
the rights of and reducing discrimination against people
living with disease, or ensuring the costs of medicines
and health products are affordable for all," said Feachem.
"Each of us must work together and fulfill our commitments,
and then, do even more."
emphasized that the most important role for the Fund
is to ensure that financial support increases and is translated
into results. In achieving this main objective, Feachem
promised that Fund operations would be distinguished
by five basic values:
balancing idealism with pragmatism. The Fund's
response will be balanced geographically and between diseases,
based on the burden of disease, greatest vulnerability
and financial need. There will also be a balanced use
of both treatment and prevention interventions.
ensuring that the public sector and private sector work
side by side, enlisting the help of all segments of society
to succeed in the challenge of controlling HIV/AIDS, TB
promoting dynamic and innovative thinking, such as is
being developed through the novel Country Coordinating
Mechanism (CCM) process which is emerging as an alternative
to the traditional means of directing donor resources
to governments in isolation of the involvement of civil
society, NGOs, faith-based organizations and the private
sector. According to Feachem, this process is still far
from perfect, but the Fund will embrace risk and
learn from mistakes in developing new and better ways
of providing financial support most rapidly to those who
can use it most effectively.
practicing transparency and accountability, increasingly
monitoring projects that have received grants, and ensuring
that their progress toward achieving agreed-upon goals
and intermediary targets is transparent to all interested
parties. Feachem acknowledged that new and more accurate
systems for dispersing and tracking the use of funds cannot
be put in place overnight, but stated that he will be
calling upon a wide array of institutions and experts
to help meet this challenge.
achieving results to improve health in a measurable way.
Feachem restated his commitment to fulfill the original
purpose of the Fund to achieve concrete and measurable
results in improving the health of those in greatest need,
changing lives in a real way.
before has the world been so poised to dramatically prevent
sickness and death from AIDS, TB and malaria," said
Feachem. "It is time to go to scale with effective
tools and strategies to fight the most deadly diseases in
low-income countries. Even if each of us just begins by
fulfilling our own existing promises and commitments, hundreds
of millions of people living in poverty will be spared suffering
Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria is an independent,
public-private partnership working to attract, manage and
disburse new resources to fight AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria,
and to rapidly disburse these funds to effective prevention
and treatment programmes in countries with greatest need.