A few weeks ago, I wrote with excitement about what the G8 and G20 might mean for global health.
CGD Policy Blogs
I recently had the opportunity to sit in on a meeting between donor and high-level Ministry of Health representatives in an African country. In a white-washed public health center with high ceiling fans whirring the tension-filled air, I witnessed a scenario that sadly demonstrated that country ownership and the process of re-thinking global health partnerships is perhaps a long way off. The donors were irate that some money they had given to a common fund had been misappropriated, and they wanted to pull all of their money out. The ministry officials who had survived the scandal were frustrated. In their view, they had done well to identify and fire the accused--they felt that the ministry should get credit that their system works to catch corrupt officials. Not a new story, but one that got me thinking about how findings from the HIV/AIDS Monitor’s research in Mozambique, Uganda and Zambia could shed some light on the issue of country ownership in the context of new U.S. global health priorities.
The topic of “country ownership” drew many people to the event organized Monday by CGD’s Nandini Oomman and her HIV/AIDS Monitor team.
A new research study by Hoare et al in PLoS (ungated) projects that, within ten years after countries attain universal access to antiretroviral treatment for AIDS, one fifth of all patients starting treatment will never have a chance to benefit from the least-expensive and least-toxic treatments, because their initial infection will be a drug resistant strain of HIV.
On reading “Global HIV/AIDS Policy in Transition” in the June 11 issue of Science, I was reminded of Al Gore’s catchwords for global warming (“An Inconvenient Truth”) because the authors – John Bongaarts and CGD Senior Fellow Mead Over – openly confront a very uncomfortable fact: money spent on treating AIDS patients saves far fewer lives than money spent on a wide range of other urgent health interventions.
This week on the Wonkcast, I'm joined by Rachel Nugent, Deputy Director for Global Health here at the Center for Global Development. She is the lead author on a new CGD working group report entitled The Race Against Drug Resistance, which prescribes a global effort to halt and reverse the spread of drug resistant microbes.
Should AIDS treatment be viewed as a complement to HIV prevention or as an alternative? AIDS activists have strongly argued that HIV prevention is impossible without AIDS treatment, that the two interventions are strong complements. Their principal evidence for this claim is the demonstrable fact that the presence of AIDS treatment increases the demand for HIV testing.