The President’s nominee for US Global AIDS Coordinator (read: the head of PEPFAR) – Dr. Deborah Birx – will appear before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Thursday for what is hoped to be a speedy confirmation hearing.
Value for money was at the top of our agenda this year, so I was pleased to see the topic also top the list of CGD’s most popular Global Health Policy blogs in 2013. The rest of this year’s list is a mixed bag, reflecting a number of debates that will likely stick around in 2014 (data for development, universal health coverage, and the state of global health financing, to name a few).
Over the last few months, we have been busy tracking and analyzing a number of notable developments in the global AIDS space. So in commemoration of World AIDS Day, marked annually on December 1st, here is a roundup of what we’ve been talking about, complete with links to our most recent work.
Our recent report, More Health for the Money, aims to answer the question: How can the Global Fund save more lives with the billions it spends each year to combat AIDS, TB and malaria? So at our recent launch event, we put this question to a panel of experts (and a room full of practitioners and policy makers) to highlight where progress on value for money is being made, and where room for improvement remains.
Policy makers on Capitol Hill have some pressing policy issues to tackle in the coming weeks (like reaching an agreement to fund the government and raising the debt ceiling). Fortunately, one bill that landed on their desk last week shouldn’t require much debate: The PEPFAR Stewardship and Oversight Act of 2013.
What do the US Congress, the US Senate and the White House have in common? (This isn’t a trick question). Both the House and the Senate matched the President’s FY14 request for global AIDS spending, including $4.02 billion for the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) and $1.65 for the Global Fund – marking a rare sweet spot where the executive and legislative branches agree.
The $52 billion FY2014 international affairs budget request is a small investment with big returns for the United States and the world, Secretary of State John Kerry said in congressional hearings last week. The request is the same amount Congress allocated in FY2013 and a four percent cut from FY2012. Kerry told members of Congress that the State Department and USAID are prepared to do more with less.
My (low) expectations for the 2013 State of the Union address were happily exceeded when President Obama delivered an ambitious speech that spanned a myriad of US and foreign policy topics. Admittedly, most of his remarks on development were cleverly disguised as domestic issues. But the 100+ wonks gathered at CGD’s annual State of the Union Bingo event weren't fooled, as mentions of climate change, immigration and trade set ink daubers in motion and prompted victorious shouts o
President Obama will deliver his 2013 State of the Union Address on Tuesday, February 12 – which also happens to be Mardi Gras. And while some may spend their evening eating king cake and throwing beads, we will be pulling out our ink daubers and partaking in a slightly more wonky tradition: CGD State of the Union Bingo. (Care to join? RSVP online!)