Global Fund Grants Zambia $42 Million To Boost HIV/AIDS Efforts
The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria is expected to provide $42 million to Zambia to help fight HIV/AIDS as soon as the country provides a plan for how it will spend the money, according to a government official, Reuters reports. The money is part of a three-year, $93 million grant to help Zambia fight HIV, TB and malaria; last year, the fund approved a disbursement of $19.8 million for that purpose (Reuters, 3/31). Toby Kasper, the Global Fund's portfolio manager, said that the nation's Central Board of Health will receive $12.4 million, the Churches Health Association of Zambia will receive $2.3 million and the remainder of the $42 million grant will be awarded to the National AIDS Network and the Ministry of Finance and National Planning. Zambian Health Minister Brian Chituwo said that the new funds will help the country "step up" the fight against HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria (Xinhua News Agency, 3/29). Central Board of Health spokesperson Victor Mukonka said that the money would go toward HIV/AIDS awareness campaigns, support for AIDS orphans and the purchase of antiretroviral drugs to be distributed free-of-charge in government hospitals. "We have met all criteria required for the funds to be released but we have not worked out a reporting and accounting system. ... That is what we are doing now," Mukonka said (Reuters, 3/31). Earlier this month, officials from Zambia and Malawi criticized the Global Fund for delaying the release of funding, which they said was "negatively affect[ing]" efforts to fight HIV/AIDS (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 3/21). According to the government, 200 Zambians die of AIDS-related causes each day and another 500 people become HIV-positive (Reuters, 3/31).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.