New York Times Profiles Melinda Gates, Her Role in Gates Foundation’s Financing of Microbicides
The New York Times on Thursday profiled Melinda Gates, including her role in financing microbicide research through the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. According to the Times, Gates has played an "instrumental role in the foundation's evolution from a modest organization less than a decade ago ... into the giant of the foundation world." Helene Gayle, who left the Gates Foundation earlier this year to become president of CARE, an international relief agency, said of the couple, "They see this as a partnership, and she's clearly a strong and equal partner." According to outside experts, Gates' influence is most notable in the foundation's support of microbicides (Lohr/Strom, New York Times, 7/6). Microbicides include a range of products -- such as gels, films and sponges -- that could help prevent the sexual transmission of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 6/27). Gates in May wrote a commentary in Newsweek highlighting the importance of microbicdes in Africa, and the Gates Foundation has given $60 million to International Partnership for Microbicides, a not-for-profit research organization, that works to develop the products. "My sense is that Melinda has intuitively understood women's vulnerability to HIV and had the sense that women didn't have the tools they needed to protect themselves," Pam Norick, chief of external relations for IPM, said (New York Times, 7/6).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.