September 2009


Global Health Policy Research Network Update (September 2009)


Coming Soon

Also of Interest


HIV/AIDS Monitor: "Moving Beyond Gender as Usual" Report and Policy Brief

The HIV/AIDS Monitor team recently released Moving Beyond Gender as Usual, a new report that analyzes how PEPFAR, the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria and the World Bank address the vulnerability of girls and women in their HIV/AIDS programming. The report provides policy recommendations about how these three large and influential HIV/AIDS donors can go beyond their stated commitments to address gender inequality. An accompanying policy brief summarizes the key findings and recommendations. Nandini Oomman, along with co-author Kim Ashburn, Gender and HIV&AIDS Scientist at ICRW, presented the report at the National Museum for Women in the Arts.

Essay on Global Nutrition Institutions

The global actors involved in implementing nutrition interventions in developing countries have fallen short in coordination, leadership, and funds. In a CGD essay released on August 12, Global Nutrition Institutions: Is There an Appetite for Change? Ruth Levine and Danielle Kuczynski describe the core institutional challenges in the field of international nutrition and point to opportunities for improvement moving forward. The authors offer two recommendations: 1) create a joint set of principles articulated by donors to guide those who receive funding for nutrition programs and policy support, including UN agencies, the World Bank, private institutions and others, and 2) elevate the nutrition security agenda within the UN using the UN System High-Level Task Force for the Global Food Security Crisis as a vehicle. These issues have been discussed with very positive results at several recent gatherings, including a workshop on nutrition and food security organized by the Institute of Medicine in mid-July and a September 22 high-level “Call to Action” meeting in New York City.

U.S. and Chinese Health Reform Efforts Share some Similarities and Many Differences

Mead Over’s July 24 blog post drew a connection between U.S. health reform and major health reform underway in China, referencing a book on the topic by Adam Wagstaff, health economist and research manager for the World Bank’s public service delivery research efforts. Adam’s August 26 comment provides details about ongoing Chinese reform and tells the story of the Chinese version of the U.S. Congressional town hall meetings. In contrast to the raucous and uninformative U.S. public events, Chinese citizens submitted thousands of complaints and suggestions over the web, which the Chinese Government laboriously compiled by category and provided to Chinese leaders.

Potential U.S. Supreme Court Case on Drug Trial Presents Mixed Picture for Global Health

CGD Visiting Fellow Tom Bollyky’s August 27 blog post discusses the possible ramifications of a case to be tried before the U.S. Supreme Court, charging that the pharmaceutical company Pfizer acted illegally during a clinical drug trial in Nigeria in 1996. Bollyky, a lawyer, is examining legal and ethical issues that arise during the discovery, development, and delivery of essential medical technologies to the developing world.

CGD Health Staff Move On and Move In

This summer, the CGD health team saw the departure of two program coordinators, Kristie Latulippe and Scott Kniaz. We now welcome Sandy Stonesifer as our newest program coordinator. Sandy joins us from the University of California, San Francisco where she was a Program Director with Advancing New Standards in Reproductive Health. Sandy is working on issues related to adolescent girls’ health with Ruth Levine.

Where Are They Now?

This new section of the Global Health Policy newsletter highlights the work of past CGD health team members who are making an impact on the world. Gargee Ghosh was one of the first employees of the Center for Global Development’s health team, where she managed a portfolio on incentive mechanisms to stimulate product development. Today, Gargee is a Senior Program Officer at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. She manages the Foundation’s innovative financing support for new and effective funding mechanisms to channel resources for health and development. She has been involved in establishing GAVI’s International Finance Facility for Immunization, putting into operation the Advance Market Commitment concept, supporting the pilot of a Global Fund Debt Conversion initiative, and launching a double-bottom line private equity fund to investment in healthcare for the poor in Africa. Gargee recently served on the Private Sector Advisory Facility Working Group at CGD.

Coming Soon

Start with a Girl: A New Agenda for Global Health

On October 7, CGD will launch Start with a Girl: A New Agenda for Global Health. The report pursues the themes of CGD’s 2008 report Girls Count: A Global Action and Investment Agenda and comes at a time when there is growing recognition at the highest levels of government and private entities of the importance of the wellbeing of girls and women in achieving broad social and economic development goals. (See blog post here on a recent New York Times feature.) Authors Miriam Temin and Ruth Levine focus on the relationship between girls' health and the as-yet-unmet Millennium Development Goals in maternal and child health and HIV/AIDS, as well as emerging problems of chronic disease, and bring new information to light about the determinants and consequences of girls' ill health in developing countries. They highlight promising programmatic experiences, and lay out an ambitious yet achievable agenda of action both within the health sector and beyond. The report emphasizes eight key actions that public and private leaders in the international community can take to attain major gains over the next several years. The report benefited from input from project advisors, including Sarah Brown, Melinda French Gates, Helene D. Gayle, Ashley Judd, Musimbi Kanyoro, Liya Kebede, Sir Michael Marmot, Thoraya Obaid, Joy Phumaphi, Mary Robinson, and Muhammad Yunus. Ruth Levine answers questions for the CGD web audience.

Working Group Report on the Private Sector Advisory Facility

The private sector plays a significant role in delivering health care to people in developing countries. By some estimates, more than one-half of all health care even to the poorest people is provided by private doctors, other health workers, drug sellers and other non-state actors. Developing country health policy and donor-supported health programs largely fail to address the problems or capture the potential of private sector health care. The CGD Private Sector Advisory Facility Working Group, comprised of experts from bilateral and multilateral organizations, foundations, consultants, the private sector and academia, met between August 2008 and April 2009 to design a facility that donors and technical agencies could use to support public-private interactions. The Working Group’s report, to be released soon, will outline a structure and focus for this new facility and discuss options for getting it off the ground.


In the Media

· Nandini Oomman’s blog Can Donors be the Lead ‘Gender Bender’ of Global Development? on the HIV/AIDS Monitor event Moving Beyond Gender as Usual was featured in the Huffington Post on June 30, 2009.

· The HIV/AIDS Monitor report Seizing the Opportunity was referenced in the Lancet’s “Call for Global Health-Systems Impact Assessments” by Swanson, Mosley, et al. on August 8, 2009.

· Nandini Oomman’s blog Obama, Clinton: Elevating Women’s Issues but Not Global Development was featured in the Huffington Post on August 20.

· The Lancet published a letter on September 5, 2009 from Rachel Nugent, Derek Yach, and Andrea Feigl about the omission of non-communicable diseases from a recent major analysis of donor funding for health.

Recent Events

CGD Drug Resistance Working Group Symposium in Accra

The work of the CGD Drug Resistance Working Group (DRWG) was recently highlighted at two international conferences of pharmacists. The DRWG presented a symposium on the drivers and policy needs regarding drug resistance at the Commonwealth Pharmacists Association meeting in Accra, Ghana on August 6. Rachel Nugent, Iruka Okeke, Prashant Yadav, and Emma Back, all members of the DRWG, participated in the symposium, along with a local representative from the WHO and a local representative of the UK’s Department for International Development. Rachel Nugent also served on an expert panel at the World Pharmacy Congress in Istanbul on September 8, where she described the DRWG work and developing recommendations. Other members of the panel who highlighted the critical importance of drug resistance were David Heymann from the WHO, Mohan Joshi from Management Sciences for Health, and Andy Gray from the University of KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa. Both sessions are described in the DRWG e-newsletter in September.

Congressional Briefing on Chronic Diseases in Developing Countries

Rachel Nugent was part of a panel of experts at a Congressional Global Health Caucus briefing on the growing problem of chronic diseases in developing countries. The July 13 event was moderated by Sir George Alleyne, director emeritus of the Pan American Health Organization; other presenters included K. Srinath Reddy, president of the Public Health Foundation of India, Johns Hopkins University Professor Gerald Anderson, and Professor Tom Gaziano from the Harvard School of Public Health and Harvard Medical School. The expert panel told the Congressional audience that chronic disease is burdening the health systems and future economies of developing countries, even the poorest. One example is the epidemiological transition in rural Bangladesh, where diarrheal disease has declined 86 percent in 20 years, while heart disease increased 3,527 percent over the same period.

Global Health Policy Blog

Making Markets for Merit Goods, Ethan Kapstein, Josh Busby

Read More Global Health Blog Posts >

Potential U.S. Supreme Court Case on Nigerian Drug Trial Presents Mixed Picture for Global Health, Tom Bollyky

A Bad Choice between Your Stomach and Your Health, Rachel Nugent, Priya Sharma

Reflections on NYT Magazine Special Issue on Gender: Three Questions to Guide the New Crusade, Ruth Levine, Molly Kinder

What Happens When You Combine a Newspaper with a Ugandan Village and the Internet?, David Wendt

A Promising Senate Initiative on Neglected Diseases, Tom Bollyky

Will the U.S. Have Better Global Health Policies but Get Worse Results?, Ruth Levine

Terminology Matters: The Dispute between India and EU over Generic Drug Transshipments, Tom Bollyky

Invading the Commonwealth, Rachel Nugent

Will a New NIH-Funded Study Tell Us Whether Immediate AIDS Treatment Slows HIV Transmission?, Mead Over

Dire Straits: Money for Treatment, Prevention for Free?, Nandini Oomman

Will You Still Need Me, Will You Still Feed Me?, Danielle Kuczynski, Rachel Nugent

If You Drive, I’ll Pay for Gas: Critical Developments in Ownership and Financing of the National HIV/AIDS Response, David Wendt

Task-Shifting Can Be Part of the Answer to ART Access—If the Numbers of Lower Level Health Workers Expand Fast Enough, Mead Over

Keeping Up with U.S. Health Reform Can We Do Better than China?, Mead Over

A C-Change in Presidential Rhetoric: Compassion to Conscience and Common Interest, Ruth Levine

Drug Marketing Push in Developing Countries Has Upside and Potential Downside for Poor People, Tom Bollyky

Will Barack Obama Call the World Bank for Advice about Fixing the U.S. Health System?, Ruth Levine

Thunder is Not Yet Rain: Highlights from the Launch of the New HIV/AIDS Monitor Report on HIV/AIDS and Gender Inequality, David Wendt

Wedding Bells for GAVI, the World Bank and the Global Fund?, Ruth Levine

The Acronym Party (Part 2): GAVI’s New Call for Nominations for IAC Members for the AMC Secretariat, Scott Kniaz

Can HIV/AIDS Donors be the Lead “Gender Bender” of Global Development?, Nandini Oomman

The “Who, What, Where, When, How and How Much” of International Health Aid But Not the “Why”, Mead Over

Give the Global Fund a Gold Star for Their Hard-Hitting Evaluation…Now Comes the Hard Part, April Harding

Zero Prices Are Special for Providers Also But Not in a Good Way, Mead Over