LOS ANGELES (January 18, 2017) AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) calls on the Global Fund to urgently revise its eligibility formula and freeze the transitioning out of Middle Income Countries (MICs) until the allocation system can be revised to better meet the needs of countries affected by AIDS, TB and malaria.
AHF joins Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), which issued a similar call in an open letter to the Global Fund Board and the Secretariat on Nov. 16, 2016. The call has been prompted by reports that in some MICs the AIDS epidemic has flared up after the Global Fund grants were discontinued.
Currently, to receive Global Fund support countries must be below a certain income level, in addition to meeting several other requirements. In effect, this policy excludes many MICs that have concentrated epidemics but lack the resources to address them fully, such as Romania and Serbia, among others.1
The recently released Equitable Access Initiative (EAI) report concluded that using Gross National Income per capita as one of the eligibility criteria is not effective because it overlooks the inequality of income distribution and the levels of disease burden in different countries. It has proposed a more nuanced allocation methodology for the Global Fund that does not use GNI per capita.
“AHF welcomes the launch of the EAI report and calls on the Global Fund to exclude GNI from future allocation decisions. We have seen time and again that allocating aid based on arbitrary income categories often does not align with where the need is greatest,” said Michael Weinstein, AHF President. “We also urge the Global Fund to step up its resource mobilization efforts. The official 5th Replenishment has ended, but there are still opportunities to engage donors who have either not contributed, or contributed far below their fair share; China is one such donor.”
“For its part, AHF as a longtime supporter of the Global Fund’s mission will continue advocacy efforts to encourage donor governments to contribute more resources to the global fight against AIDS, TB and malaria as part of its “Fund the Fund” campaign,” said Terri Ford, AHF Chief of Global Advocacy and Policy. “There is no time for complacency, the triple epidemic is still claiming millions of lives every year and we urgently need to increase resource for treatment around the world.”
AHF pioneered “Raise the MIC” advocacy since 2015 to ensure MICs have access to multilateral assistance and affordable medicines; more information is available on the campaign website http://raisethemic.org/.
1 International Civil Society Support (ICSS), Open Society Foundations (OSF), The Fremont Center, January 2017. “Action plan to reverse destructive HIV financing trends in middle-income countries”