Global Fund Was Right To Suspend Grants to Uganda, Lancet Editorial Says
By suspending its grants to Uganda, the Global Fund To Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria took "a principled stand against misuse of funds" even though the country is "revered for its achievements" in fighting HIV/AIDS, a Lancet editorial says (Lancet, 9/3). The Global Fund last week announced its suspension of five grants worth more than $200 million after an audit of one of the grants by PricewaterhouseCoopers found evidence of serious mismanagement by the Ugandan Ministry of Health's Project Management Unit, which was established to implement the grants. The fund has requested that the Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development, which serves as the principal recipient for the five grants, implement a new method of effectively managing the grants by the end of October (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 9/1). The audit shows that Uganda's success in reducing its HIV prevalence since 1992 is "despite rather than because of" the government's management of the grants, according to the Lancet. Although the issue of Uganda's "problems" likely will be discussed next week in London at the Global Fund replenishment conference, international donors should bear in mind the fund's "impressive achievements ... as well as its difficulties," the editorial concludes (Lancet, 9/3).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.