Ideas to Action:

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CGD Policy Blogs


Insuring the Flu: Vaccines for All?

Reuters recently reported that the global health community is beginning to explore potential insurance mechanisms and risk management products to finance pandemic flu vaccines for developing countries, in addition to a new vaccine stockpile supported by GSK and other manufacturers:

A Slouching Report on the Millennium Challenge Account

Usually a big fan of the succint and balanced reporting of Congressional Quarterly, last weeks article by Tom Starks entitled "A Slouching Millennium Challenge." was a let down. A lost opportunity to provide a balanced view to some of the stale assertions. Readers know that because I care about the success of the MCA as a new foreign aid program for a new era, I am often a constructive critic But this article screams for more food for thought:
Says Starks:

USG Funding for AIDS Research is No Laughing Matter

Last week's Onion analyzed the breakdown of President Bush's request to double PEPFAR funding to $30 billion:

  • $10 billion: Programs to get people off AIDS and back to work
  • $30 million: Equipping future Black Hawks with crates of pamphlets and condoms, so next time won't be a total loss
  • $1.5 billion: Installing particularly vicious anti-AIDS dictator in Uganda
  • $17 million: Global campaign to promote dry humping

Lighting Up the IP Debate

Victoria Hale, head of OneWorld Health, an innovative non-profit pharmaceutical firm, reckons that compulsory licensing could prove "the last blow" that pushes the drug industry away from looking for cures for diseases of the poor world, which are already woefully neglected...

Bruce Lehman, a lawyer who worked on the TRIPS [sic] accord in the Clinton administration, thinks it is cynical for middle-income countries "to avoid paying their fair share of drug-discovery costs."

Bill Gates to Harvard Grads: Creative Capitalism Saves Lives

gates_then_now_0607.jpgBill Gates finally got a Harvard degree yesterday, about 30 years after he dropped out to go fritter away his time playing with computer code. He also got the chance to exhort this year's graduates to work toward the greater good, applying their education and talents to solving some of the toughest social and economic problems in the world.

Committing to Child Survival: What are the Priorities?

Americans are broadly supportive of the efforts to reduce the tragic toll of AIDS, in part because they know that many children are affected by the disease and children's health has always been one of the highest priorities voiced in public opinion polls. But the truth is that most children who die in the developing world aren't dying from AIDS. They are dying from the same preventable killers as have stalked them in the past such as diarrhea, pneumonia, and malaria.

Don't Homeland Securitize our Public Health Needs

Billions of dollars spent on tougher airline security and border protection proved incapable of stopping a globe-trotting tuberculosis patient from entering the U.S. last week, in large part because public-health issues haven't been treated as national-security issues, according to homeland security officials and experts.

Retiring the IMF Wage Bill Ceiling

A new report by Medicins sans Frontieres is among the latest to call on the IMF to drop wage bill ceilings with low-income countries. Alongside three other recommendations, MSF recommends that the IMF and ministries of finance drop wage bill ceilings given their distortionary and negative impact on the expansion of the health care workforce to combat HIV/AIDS.