25 April 2014
Shawn Clackett

Net Campaign Targets Universal Coverage in Chad

Global Fund News Release – 25 April, 2014

A child receives anti-malarial medication in the Central African Republic, near the Chad border.

A child receives anti-malarial medication in the Central African Republic, near the Chad border – Photo from Unicef.org.nz

KELO, Chad–The Government of Chad, with support from the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria and UNICEF, launched a mass campaign today to distribute nearly 7.3 million long lasting insecticide-treated mosquito nets.

The campaign, which began today, on the occasion of World Malaria Day, will continue over the coming weeks and will move Chad toward universal coverage.

Of the 7.3 million nets to be distributed free of charge, 5.6 million are financed by the Global Fund, 1.7 million by the Government of Chad and 200,000 have been acquired with funding from the Government of Japan, as well as 65,000 with UN Foundation funding, both through UNICEF. Nearly 10 million people will benefit and will receive protection against malaria for the next three years.

“The fight against malaria, both in its preventive and curative aspect, requires a long-time consistent investment and a strong political commitment. The investment made by the Chadian Government and its partners will make available to the population millions of mosquito nets to prevent malaria. The efforts made by the Government will continue and will allow the country to defeat this disease,” said Dr Ngariéra Rimadjita, Minister of Health, Social Action and National Solidarity.

Intended to cover Chad’s entire territory, the campaign will reach 13 high-risk regions, covering 48 health districts and 800 health centers, in the first phase. Supported by a large social mobilization effort, the campaign will run throughout 2014 to achieve universal coverage. The government will provide funding for the remaining 10 regions.

“Chad will be the first country in the sub-region to achieve universal mosquito net coverage,” said Tina Draser, the Global Fund’s Regional Manager for Western Africa. “This will not only help to save more lives, including thousands of women and children under 5 years of age, but also to strengthen health systems in Chad.”

Malaria is endemic in Chad with a high prevalence in the Sudanese region (the South) and the Sahel (Central and Eastern). Children under the age of five and pregnant women are the most affected. Epidemiological analysis of Chad shows that 98 percent of the population lives in areas at risk of malaria. The prevalence of malaria is 29.8 percent in Chad, according to the 2010 Malaria Indicator Survey (MIS), with a prevalence of 35.8 percent among children under 5 years of age.

In 2013, Chad experienced a severe outbreak of malaria, with nearly 1 million suspected cases and 2,614 deaths, compared with 616,000 suspected cases and 1,359 deaths in 2012, according to data from epidemiological surveillance.

“This is a first in this part of Central Africa and brings positive progress in accelerating child survival and development in Chad. More than 8 out of 10 households will be reached and mothers and children will be able to sleep under a mosquito net, safe from the threat of malaria, which is the leading cause of infant mortality in the country,” said Bruno Maes, UNICEF Representative in Chad. “Mosquito nets remain by far the best way of prevention against this disease.”

In August 2013, the Support Fund for Population Activities and Fight against AIDS (FOSAP) signed a financing agreement of more than 20 million euros for UNICEF to organize the campaign distribution in 13 regions of Chad. This agreement is supported by the new funding model of the Global Fund. UNICEF has been selected as a sub-recipient of this funding for the implementation of the program. Overall, Chad has benefited through this mechanism from a Global Fund grant totaling more than €25 million.

In 2011, through funding from the Global Fund and the Islamic Development Bank (IDB), the country – supported by its partners – carried out mass distribution campaigns of long lasting Insecticide-treated bed nets in 9 regions, benefiting more than 3 million people.

22 April 2014
Shawn Clackett

UNICEF and Global Fund Coordinate Efforts to Reach Mothers, Newborns and Children

Sayon Keita with her 8 month old son, Samba. A few days before this photo was taken, Samba was receiving treatment for severe malnutrition at Kangaba Hospital in Mali

Photo from UNICEF

GENEVA/NEW YORK – UNICEF and the Global Fund today reinforced their long-standing partnership through a new agreement to better coordinate efforts aimed at reducing the burden of HIV, tuberculosis and malaria and improving the health of mothers, newborns, and children.

Mark Dybul, Executive Director of the Global Fund, and UNICEF Executive Director Anthony Lake signed a new Memorandum of Understanding that emphasizes the importance of coordinating investments in commodities to prevent and treat HIV, tuberculosis and malaria with those designed to improve overall maternal, newborn, and child health.

“The Global Fund has helped expand access for millions of mothers and children to lifesaving commodities that prevent and treat HIV, TB, and malaria,” said Lake.  “This new agreement will help governments integrate these critical investments with health services that support basic maternal, newborn, and child health.  This integration will increase the effectiveness of both efforts and potentially save millions of lives.”

Specifically, the Global Fund and UNICEF agreed to jointly identify countries where HIV and malaria investments for mothers and children could be better aligned with investments in basic maternal, newborn and child health.  As a first step, these commodities could include iron and folic acid, tetanus vaccinations, syphilis screening and treatment for pregnant women, and antibiotics to treat pneumonia and oral rehydration salts and zinc to treat diarrheal disease in children.

Under the new agreement, the Global Fund and UNICEF will encourage governments and Country Coordinating Mechanisms to integrate packages of care and support for mothers and children, and to apply for Global Fund grants that align HIV, TB and malaria programming with broader maternal, newborn and child health efforts.  UNICEF will support governments that wish to review and revise national strategies to strengthen this alignment and will help mobilize additional funding where necessary to purchase supplies and equipment for the care of mothers, newborns and children.

“This partnership between UNICEF and the Global Fund strengthens what is already operating on the ground in many countries,” said Dr. Dybul. “We have much further to go, and by working together we can achieve tremendous progress for women and children around the world.”

7 April 2014
Shawn Clackett

Partners in Eastern and Southern Africa Look at Investment Framework

Global Fund News Flash: 07 April 2014

Photo from Unicef.org

Prof. Sheila Tlou, Director of UNAIDS Regional Support Team in East and Southern Africa

WINDHOEK, Namibia Partners from countries in Eastern and Southern Africa opened a four-day meeting in the Namibian capital this week to examine how to make investments achieve the greatest possible impact in partnership with the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.

More than 150 people – from governments, civil society, technical partners in 12 countries – came together to discuss the Global Fund’s new funding model and to look at how to optimize use of all available funding. Encouraging each country to prioritize investments and coordinate them with national plans and strategies for health is a central theme of the new funding model.

Dr. Richard Kamwi, Namibia’s Minister of Health and Social Services, opened the meeting by asking participants to champion an increase in domestic investments in health, which he said would strengthen partnerships and safeguard the gains of the past 10 years.

“Speak to your governments,” said Dr. Kamwi. “Unless we sustain these gains, the progress we have made will have been futile.”

In the spirit of partnership, Dr. Kamwi announced that his country’s cabinet had authorized a donation of US$1 million to the Global Fund.

The new funding model was designed to more fully deliver on the promise of partnership that created the Global Fund in 2002. That includes strong country ownership, increased domestic spending on health and a focus on human rights.

Prof. Sheila Tlou, Director of  UNAIDS  Regional Support Team in East and Southern Africa, told the meeting that the region should use the new funding model to ensure that marginalized people not only get prevention and treatment but are also involved in decision-making.

“We need to ensure that key populations are involved in the formulation and implementation of programs under the new funding model,” she said. “We need to ensure that no one is left behind.”

Cynthia Mwase, the Regional Manager of Southern and Eastern Africa at the Global Fund, said that the new funding model integrates human rights and partnership into new grants, and also provides a strategic roadmap on how the region can remove the three diseases as threats to public health. She said the meeting was organized to help Global Fund partners in the region to prepare to attain impact through the US$1.7 billion now available for the funding period.

For more information, please contact:
Ernest Waititu

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31 March 2014
Shawn Clackett

Kenya Aims to Reduce Malaria Mortality by Two Thirds by 2017

Global Fund News Release – 31 March 2014

Photo from http://www.theguardian.com/journalismcompetition/gsk-malaria

NAIROBI, Kenya – The Global Fund, the Government of Kenya, and the African Medical and Research Foundation today signed a grant agreement worth US$80 million that will support Kenya’s continuing fight against malaria.

By maintaining universal coverage with Long-Lasting Insecticide Nets (LLIN), and the provision of quality assured treatment for malaria (ACTs), Kenya expects to reduce malaria mortality by two-thirds by 2017.

“We welcome this funding that is supporting our objective to achieve universal nets ownership in Kenya and availability of diagnostic and treatments for malaria,” said James Macharia, Cabinet Secretary for Health. “These Global Fund grants are focused on scaling up interventions for impact through the procurement and distribution of 7.7 million LLINs in 23 counties.”

The emphasis of targeting for impact is consistent with the new funding model of the Global Fund. This grant aims to bring together the provision of effective medicines and diagnostics to public and faith-based health facilities with quality control for both medicines and diagnostics. In addition it will also continue to support behavior change communication (BCC) and program monitoring and evaluation.

“Since the start, grant implementation in Kenya has contributed to significant gains in malaria control,” said Linden Morrison, Head of High Impact Africa II Department at the Global Fund. “We are encouraged by Kenya’s work and its proposal that aims to sustain the scale-up of its efforts and consolidation of its current gains.”

The programs will be implemented by the National Treasury through Kenya’s Ministry of Health and the African Medical and Research Foundation (AMREF).

The work of the two actors complement each other with the National Treasury undertaking treatment and prevention at facility level, plus vector control measures such as LLIN and IRS.

AMREF is implementing the community case management of malaria, conducting training and undertaking BCC activities. The organization will be supporting over 700 Community Units, more than 7,000 Community Health Workers and 21 Civil Society Organizations.

“With this support, we will be able to reach out to vulnerable communities who have poor access to services,” said Dr. Teguest Guerma, Director General of AMREF. “Community involvement in this fight is very critical. We appreciate the support of the Global Fund, the Government of Kenya and the communities we work with, to strengthen our commitment for a lasting health change in Africa.”

AMREF is a health African Non-Governmental Organisation that implements programmes through communities and in partnership with host governments and Civil Society actors. Through AMREF’s work, Kenya is able to sustain the gains made in reaching vulnerable populations with quality diagnosis, treatment and prevention services.

Kenya has a population of 38 million people. The Malaria Control Program of Kenya estimates that 70 percent of the Kenyan population is at risk of malaria and 66 percent (two thirds of the population) is at risk of malaria in endemic, highland epidemic prone and seasonal transmission areas. The estimated number of malaria cases reported in 2010 was 3.5 million and parasite prevalence among children under five years was 8 percent.

Kenya has reported a decline by up to 44 percent in under-five mortality in sentinel districts, attributed to LLIN use. Inpatient malaria mortality indicated a 47 percent decline between 2000 and 2010.

 

For more information please contact:

The Global Fund
Marcela Rojo

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