Global Fund Should Get More U.S. Support, Increase Cooperation With Other Development Organizations, Editorials Say
Following Thursday's announcement by the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria that it would award $378 million in grant funding over two years to 40 programs in 31 countries and had "fast-track[ed]" for approval an additional $238 million for 18 other proposals, both the New York Times and the Washington Post published editorials regarding the fund.
- New York Times: If U.S. lawmakers "begin to respond to AIDS as the catastrophe it is" by increasing the U.S. contribution to the global fund, lawmakers in other countries "will follow," a New York Times editorial says. Although fund officials last week announced grants totaling $616 million -- "all the money [the fund] has" -- the "reluctance" by wealthy nations to financially back the fund meant that "expensive" antiretroviral treatment programs were "not emphasiz[ed]." However, as some "influential" Congress members, including Sens. Jesse Helms (R-N.C.) and Arlen Specter (R-Pa.), have proposed increases in HIV/AIDS spending, that "reluctance" might "begin to change," the editorial concludes (New York Times, 4/27).
- Washington Post: The "succes[s]" of the global fund depends on how the donor governments allow it to function, a Washington Post editorial says. While the fund was created as a separate organization "outside the umbrella of the United Nations or the World Bank" in order to improve its efficiency, the fund must forge relationships with other development agencies to avoid the "pitfalls" of putting additional stress on developing nations by "adding to the list of donors that [these countries] must cater to" or by ineffectively monitoring the quality of the programs it funds. The "shortcomings of existing institutions often reflect the warring priorities of member governments, and if the same conflicts are projected onto the new global fund, it may perform little better," the editorial concludes (Washington Post, 4/29).