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CGD Policy Blogs


Country Ownership and Rethinking Global Health Partnerships: From Dependence to Symbiosis

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.

Yet Another Inconvenient Truth: AIDS Treatment Is a Costly Way to Save Lives

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.

Can Couples Testing Contribute to Achieving the AIDS Transition?

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.