The Center for Global Development’s excellent Global Health Policy blog noted today the huge resource deficit that the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TD, and Malaria is currently facing – a $2.6 billion funding gap over the next two years.
To cover those cuts, the Global Fund is taking ten percent off the top of all grants, calling it an “efficiency cut.” In my own experience, that will work for the first round or two, and then everyone will just start gaming the system by padding their grant requests. They are also only committing to pay 90 percent of grant funding and are assuming they’ll find a way to fill in the other 10 percent in the next two years. Finally, they’re probably going to delay grant approvals until more funding is available.
It adds up to the erosion of funding for HIV, TB, and Malaria, at a time when the money is needed more than ever. All three of those illnesses are made worse by poverty. In a time of global financial crisis the need is heightened not lessened.