Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Eric Goosby on PEPFAR's next Five Years

Here is an excerpt from a blog post by Ambassador Eric Goosby, U.S. Global AIDS Coordinator, on PEPFAR's new Five-Year Strategy (follow the link for the complete text of the Strategy), which explains how the U.S. plans to change the ways in which it engages in the effort against HIV/AIDS in PEPFAR countries. The gist of the strategy is a shift from an "emergency response" to one that is more "sustainable" and long-term.

Reflecting the principles of the GHI, under our new PEPFAR Five-Year Strategy, PEPFAR is transitioning from an emphasis on an emergency response to a sustainable one. To accomplish this, PEPFAR is working with partner governments to increase their ownership of, and capacity to lead, HIV/AIDS responses in country. Achieving this outcome requires a heightened effort to improve health systems at the country level. PEPFAR will deepen our work with countries to expand their capacity to deliver the health interventions they designate as priorities. As we build health systems, PEPFAR will also use these systems as a platform to directly support treatment for more than four million individuals living with HIV/AIDS, prevention of more than 12 million new infections, and care for more than 12 million individuals affected and infected by HIV/AIDS, including 5 million orphans and vulnerable children.

Cultivating a sustainable response to the range of global health issues is no easy task. The Administration is dedicating unprecedented funding -- totaling $63 billion over six years -- towards the GHI. This figure is nothing short of remarkable: compared to the preceding six-year period from 2003-2008, this resource commitment for 2009-2014 represents more than a doubling of funds. Included in this in an increase in funding for PEPFAR, allowing us to expand the reach and maximize the impact of our HIV/AIDS programming.

This initiative represents a new and innovative way of doing business for the U.S. Government, promoting coordination among agencies and programs to avoid duplication of efforts and maximize the impact of each dollar invested. As part of GHI, PEPFAR will work closely with other United States Government programs to build the efficiency and effectiveness of national health systems, strengthening their ability to meet the variety of health needs individuals face, including HIV-related needs.

The GHI prioritizes a woman- and girl-centered approach. Over the long term, improving the health of women acts as a positive multiplier, benefiting not only the health but the social and economic development of future generations. PEPFAR also embraces this approach in our strategy, recognizing the disproportionate impact of HIV on women and the centrality of women to the health of their families and communities.

The GHI principles also reflect the reality that improving global health outcomes is a shared responsibility, and emphasizes collaboration with country and international partners. To sustain the gains made on HIV, we will strengthen our partnerships with the multilateral community, non-governmental organizations and the private sector.

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