Veronica Mohapeloa, BUA News
"The Global Fund is one of the most important health initiatives in the
world today," said Microsoft founder Bill Gates, Co-Chair of the Gates
"The Global Fund has an excellent track record, and we need to do
everything we can to support its continued success, which will save millions of
The announcement, made on Wednesday, comes a week before the 16th
International AIDS Conference in Toronto. This biennial gathering is to assess
the status of the pandemic and stake out global priorities.
More than 25 000 researchers, health workers, advocates, and policymakers
will meet in the city on 13 August to discuss progress and prospects in the
fight against AIDS.
The theme is "Time to Deliver".
Conference co-chair Mark Wainberg applauded the Global Fund and the Gates
Foundation for taking the challenge of the conference theme to heart.
He said the theme underscored the urgency of bringing effective HIV
prevention, care, and treatment to communities the world over, and the need for
stakeholders to fulfill their commitments, be they financial, programmatic, or
"We are extremely grateful to the Gates Foundation for this show of
confidence in the Global Fund," said Richard Feachem, Executive Director of
the Global Fund.
"The Global Fund has proven itself to be an effective way to reach
millions of people with urgently-needed medicines and other services. This new
commitment by the Gates Foundation will enable us to reach millions more."
Dr Carol Jacobs, Chairperson of the Global Fund's Board said the Gates
Foundation had played an important role in making the Global Fund an effective
and innovative public/private partnership it was today.
"I hope that other donors, especially those from the private sector,
will come together to ensure long-term, sustainable financing for the Global
Since its launch four years ago, the Global Fund has become a major funder of
global efforts to combat AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria.
With grants from the Global Fund, 132 countries have begun to produce
substantial results, including 544 000 people provided with life-extending HIV
and AIDS treatment, more than 1.4 million people treated for TB, and more than
11 million bed nets distributed to protect children from malaria.
"As we move from crisis management to a sustained AIDS response, we will
continue to rely on the Global Fund as the best model to provide strategic and
predictable funding," said Dr Peter Piot, Executive Director, UNAIDS.
Dr Piot said a fully-funded Global Fund was absolutely critical to the AIDS
response, saying without it, it would be difficult to turn all of the good ideas
and strategic plans into reality.
"With the support of the Global Fund, Tanzania has begun to make inroads
against the terrible toll of the three diseases," said Lucy Ng'ang'a,
Executive Director of the Eastern African National Network of AIDS Service
"Children are sleeping safely under protective bed nets, TB patients are
being cured, and people with AIDS are receiving medications that can keep them
healthy for decades.
The Gates Foundation's new contribution to the Global Fund will help us to
save many more lives in Tanzania, and in our neighboring countries in Eastern
The Gates Foundation grant is structured so that a 100 million Dollars will
be provided each year from 2006 through 2010.
The contributions for 2006 and 2007 will be available to support the Global
Fund's sixth round of financing, which is slated to be approved by the Global
Fund's board in November.
The latest grant by the Foundation brings the Gates Foundation's total
support for the Global Fund to 650 million Dollars.
In 2001, it pledged 100 million Dollars to the Global Fund in 2001 and an
additional 50 million Dollars in 2004.
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