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CGD Notes

PEPFAR Reauthorization: Improving Transparency in U.S. Funding for HIV/AIDS

Michael Bernstein and Sarah Jane Staats (Hise)
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The President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) provides more than $5 billion per year to prevent and treat HIV/AIDS yet little information about how this money is used is publicly available. While the U.S. government collects extensive information about how PEPFAR funding is used, only a small share of this data is publicly disclosed. Even PEPFAR staff are not able to access some of the collected data. In this CGD note, Michael Bernstein and Sarah Jane Staats (Hise) urge Congress to mandate the regular release of already-collected PEPFAR data as part of the program's reauthorization. Releasing the data, they argue, would improve coordination between PEPFAR and other donors, while allowing PEPFAR staff to better assess progress, hold recipients accountable, and increase cost-effectiveness of programs.

CGD's HIV/AIDS Monitor will soon be releasing a significant share of PEPFAR's funding data for Fiscal Years 2004 through 2006.* The data will be made available in conjunction with a new CGD working paper that will demonstrate how the data can improve our understanding of key issues surrounding PEPFAR, such as the flexibility of its funding and the amount of money going to local recipients.

*These data were originally obtained from the State Department by the Center for Public Integrity (CPI) through a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request. CPI generously agreed to provide CGD with these data.