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National responses to global health targets: exploring policy transfer in the context of the UNAIDS '90-90-90' treatment targets in Ghana and Uganda.
Health Policy and Planning. 2018 Jan 1; 33(1):17-33.Global health organizations frequently set disease-specific targets with the goal of eliciting adoption at the national-level; consideration of the influence of target setting on national policies, program and health budgets is of benefit to those setting targets and those intended to respond. In 2014, the Joint United Nations Program on HIV/AIDS set ‘ambitious’ treatment targets for country adoption: 90% of HIV-positive persons should know their status; 90% of those on treatment; 90% of those achieving viral suppression. Using case studies from Ghana and Uganda, we explore how the target and its associated policy content have been adopted at the national level. That is whether adoption is in rhetoric only or supported by program, policy or budgetary changes. We review 23 (14 from Ghana, 9 from Uganda) national policy, operational and strategic documents for the HIV response and assess commitments to ‘90-90-90’. In-person semi-structured interviews were conducted with purposively sampled key informants (17 in Ghana, 20 in Uganda) involved in program-planning and resource allocation within HIV to gain insight into factors facilitating adoption of 90-90-90. Interviews were transcribed and analyzed thematically, inductively and deductively, guided by pre-existing policy theories, including Dolowitz and Marsh’s policy transfer framework to describe features of the transfer and the Global Health Advocacy and Policy Project framework to explain observations. Regardless of notable resource constraints, transfer of the 90-90-90 targets was evident beyond rhetoric with substantial shifts in policy and programme activities. In both countries, there was evidence of attempts to minimize resource constraints by seeking programme efficiencies, prioritization of program activities and devising domestic financing mechanisms; however, significant resource gaps persist. An effective health network, comprised of global and local actors, mediated the adoption and adaptation, facilitating a shift in the HIV program from ‘business as usual’ to approaches targeting geographies and populations.
American Mock World Health Organization: An Innovative Model for Student Engagement in Global Health Policy.
Global Health: Science and Practice. 2017 Mar 24; 5(1):164-174.The American Mock World Health Organization (AMWHO) is a model for experiential-based learning and student engagement in global health diplomacy. AMWHO was established in 2014 at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a mission to engage students in health policy by providing a simulation of the World Health Assembly (WHA), the policy-forming body of the World Health Organization that sets norms and transforms the global health agenda. AMWHO conferences are designed to allow students to take their knowledge of global health beyond the classroom and practice their skills in diplomacy by assuming the role of WHA delegates throughout a 3-day weekend. Through the process of developing resolutions like those formed in the WHA, students have the unique opportunity to understand the complexities behind the conflict and compromise that ensues through the lens of a stakeholder. This article describes the structure of the first 2 AMWHO international conferences, analyzes survey results from attendees, and discusses the expansion of the organization into a multi-campus national network. The AMWHO 2014 and 2015 post-conference survey results found that 98% and 90% of participants considered the conference "good" or "better," respectively, and survey responses showed that participants considered the conference "influential" in their careers and indicated that it "allowed a paradigm shift not possible in class."
Geneva, Switzerland, UNAIDS, 2017. 198 p. (UNAIDS/JC2900E)Since they were launched at the 20th International AIDS Conference in Melbourne, Australia, in 2014, the 90-90-90 targets have become a central pillar of the global quest to end the AIDS epidemic. The targets reflect a fundamental shift in the world’s approach to HIV treatment, moving it away from a focus on the number of people accessing antiretroviral therapy and towards the importance of maximising viral suppression among people living with HIV. This shift was driven by greater understanding of the benefits of viral suppression -- not only does treatment protect people living with HIV from AIDS-related illness, but it also greatly lowers the risk of transmitting the virus to others.
Washington, D.C., World Bank, 2005.  p. (World Bank Working Paper No. 68)In recent years, Europe and Central Asia has experienced the world’s fastest growing HIV/AIDS epidemic. Yet, in the Western Balkan countries the HIV prevalence rate is under 0.1 percent, which ranks among the lowest. This may be due to a low level of infection among the population—or partly due to inadequate surveillance systems. All major contributing factors for the breakout of an HIV/AIDS epidemic are present in the Western Balkans. HIV/AIDS disproportionably affects youth (80 percent of HIV-infected people are 30 years old or younger). Most of the Western Balkan countries have very young populations, which have been affected by the process of social transition, wars, unemployment and other factors. Among youth, there is generalized use of drugs and sexual risk behavior. Therefore, the number of cases of HIV has been increasing, especially in Serbia, and the incidence of Hepatitis C has clearly increased, which suggests that sharing of infected needles is practiced by injecting drug users. Apart from human suffering, an HIV/AIDS epidemic can have a significant impact on costs of care for individuals, households, health services and society as a whole. This study has found weak public health systems and gaps in financing and institutional capacity necessary to implement evidence-based and cost-effective HIV/AIDS Strategies. Political commitment must increase for action to occur promptly. Prevention interventions are cost effective and, in the short term, affordable with own-country resources. Medium- and long-term interventions would require donor assistance. Longer-term interventions would aim at preventing poverty, exclusion and unemployment, for example, by empowering young people to participate in the regional and global labor market.
Global Public Health. 2014; 9(8):865-879.Lauded for getting specific health issues onto national and international agendas and for their potential to improve value for money and outcomes, public-private global health initiatives (GHIs) have come to dominate global health governance. Yet, they have also been criticised for their negative impact on country health systems. In response, disease-specific GHIs have, somewhat paradoxically, appropriated the aim of health system strengthening (HSS). This article critically analyses this development through an ethnographic case study of the GAVI Alliance, which funds vaccines in poor countries. Despite GAVI’s self-proclaimed ‘single-minded’ focus on vaccines, HSS support is fronted as a key principle of GAVI’s mission. Yet, its meaning remains unclear and contested understandings of the health systems agenda abound, reflecting competing public health ideologies and professional pressures within the global health field. Contrary to broader conceptualisations of HSS that emphasise social and political dimensions, GAVI’s HSS support has become emblematic of the so-called ‘Gates approach’ to global health, focused on targeted technical solutions with clear, measurable outcomes. In spite of adopting rhetoric supportive of ‘holistic’ health systems, GHIs like GAVI have come to capture the global debate about HSS in favour of their disease-specific approach and ethos.
Making fair choices on the path to universal health coverage. Final report of the WHO Consultative Group on Equity and Universal Health Coverage.
Geneva, Switzerland, WHO, 2014.  p.Universal health coverage (UHC) is at the center of current efforts to strengthen health systems and improve the level and distribution of health and health services. This document is the final report of the WHO Consultative Group on Equity and Universal Health Coverage. The report addresses the key issues of fairness and equity that arise on the path to UHC. As such, the report is relevant for every actor that affects that path and governments in particular, as they are in charge of overseeing and guiding the progress toward UHC.
Multilateral, regional, and national determinants of policy adoption: the case of HIV/AIDS legislative action.
International Journal of Public Health. 2013 Apr; 58(2):285-93.OBJECTIVES: This article examines the global legislative response to the HIV/AIDS epidemic with a particular focus on how policies were diffused internationally or regionally, or facilitated internally. METHODS: This article uses event history analysis combined with multinomial logit regression to model the legislative response of 133 countries. RESULTS: First, the results demonstrate that the WHO positively influenced the likelihood of a legislative response. Second, the article demonstrates that development bank aid helped to spur earlier legislative action. Third, the results demonstrate that developed countries acted earlier than developing countries. And finally, the onset and severity of the HIV/AIDS epidemic was a significant influence on the legislative response. CONCLUSION: Multilateral organizations have a positive influence in global policy diffusion through informational advocacy, technical assistance, and financial aid. It is also clear that internal stressors play key roles in legislative action seen clearly through earlier action being taken in countries where the shock of the onset of HIV/AIDS occurred earlier and earlier responses taken where the epidemic was more severe.
Geneva, Switzerland, UNAIDS, 2011 Aug.  p. (UNAIDS/ JC2112E)This report shows that these global commitments will be achieved only if the unique needs of young women and men are acknowledged, and their human rights fulfilled, respected, and protected. In order to reduce new HIV infections among young people, achieve the broader equity goals set out in the MDGs, and begin to reverse the overall HIV epidemic, HIV prevention and treatment efforts must be tailored to the specific needs of young people.
Geneva, Switzerland, WHO, 2011.  p.This publication presents data on the 114 WHO Member States that participated in the 2009 global survey on eHealth. Intended as a reference to the state of eHealth development in Member States, the publication highlights selected indicators in the form of country profiles. The objectives of the country profiles are to: describe the current status of the use of ICT for health in Member States; and provide information concerning the progress of eHealth applications in these countries. (Excerpt)
Entre Nous. 2009; (68):6-7.The WHO Regional Office for Europe has been promoting family and community health (FCH) interventions since 1992, including biennial meetings for FCH focal points in Member States. Our FCH activities follow a holistic approach, focusing on the health and development of individuals and families across the life course. For sexual and reproductive health (SRH) this means focusing on overall SRH, health of mothers and newborns, children and adolescents, as well as healthy aging. In recent years, the contribution of health systems to improve health has been re-evaluated in many countries. The WHO European Ministerial Conference on Health Systems “Health Systems, Health and Wealth” in Tallinn, June 2008 has discussed the impact of people’s health and economic growth, and has taken stock of recent evidence on effective strategies to improve the performance of health systems. In line with these developments, the WHO Regional Office for Europe held the FCH focal points meeting in Malta, September 2008 with the aim of contributing to the improvement of FCH in a health systems framework.
Coordination, management and utilization of foreign assistance for HIV / AIDS prevention in Vietnam. Assessment report.
Ha Noi, Vietnam, CCRD, 2006 Oct. 82 p. (CCRD Assesssment Report)International assistance for HIV / AIDS prevention and control in Vietnam has significantly contributed to combating this epidemic. However, while current resources have not yet fully met the needs, the management and utilization of resources still had many limitations which affect the effectiveness of foreign assistance and investments. The independent assessment was prepared for the Conference on “the Coordination of Foreign Assistance for HIV / AIDS Prevention and Control”. Analytical assessment and comments on the management and coordination of foreign aid were made on the basis of Government’s official procedures and regulations on those issues. This research was carried out in October, 2006.
Reproductive Health Matters. 2009 May; 17(33):91-104.This paper examines why progress towards Millennium Development Goal 5 on maternal health appears to have stagnated in much of the global south. We contend that besides the widely recognised existence of weak health systems, including weak services, low staffing levels, managerial weaknesses, and lack of infrastructure and information, this stagnation relates to the inability of most countries to meet two essential conditions: to develop access to publicly funded, comprehensive health care, and to provide the not-for-profit sector with needed political, technical and financial support. This paper offers a critical perspective on the past 15 years of international health policies as a possible cofactor of high maternal mortality, because of their emphasis on disease control in public health services at the expense of access to comprehensive health care, and failures of contracting out and public–private partnerships in health care. Health care delivery cannot be an issue both of trade and of right. Without policies to make health systems in the global south more publicly-oriented and accountable, the current standards of maternal and child health care are likely to remain poor, and maternal deaths will continue to affect women and their families at an intolerably high level.
The Global Campaign for the Health MDGs: Challenges, opportunities, and the imperative of shared learning.
Lancet. 2007 Sep 22; 370(9592):1018-1020.On Sept 5, the International Health Partnership (IHP) was launched by the UK, and on Sept 26, Women and Children First: the Global Business Plan for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health will be launched by Norway. These two new efforts, along with the Canadian Catalytic Initiative to Save a Million Lives, have been packaged as part of a broader Global Campaign for the Health Millennium Goals (MDGs). Such an explosion of proposals, which is meant to accelerate action for achieving MDGs 4, 5, and 6, should be welcomed by the world's health community. The proposals are further recognition of the continued commitment by high-income countries to address key health challenges in low-income and middle-income countries. Building on a decade of expanding work in global health, we can hope that these high-profile initiatives will sustain interest and address major obstacles to improving the health of the poorest people in the magnitude and time-frame demanded by the MDGs. Nevertheless, as is often the case with new policy efforts, the main operative aspects of the proposals and their likely consequences can be difficult to identify. We frame questions on five key issues that these announcements highlight. (excerpt)
Bulletin of the World Health Organization. 2006 May; 84(5):338.The context for this theme collection is the publication of the report of the Commission on Intellectual Property Rights, Innovation and Public Health. The report of the Commission -- instigated by WHO's World Health Assembly in 2003 -- was an attempt to gather all the stakeholders involved to analyse the relationship between intellectual property rights, innovation and public health, with a particular focus on the question of funding and incentive mechanisms for the creation of new medicines, vaccines and diagnostic tests, to tackle diseases disproportionately affecting developing countries. In reality, generating a common analysis in the face of the divergent perspectives of stakeholders, and indeed of the Commission, presented a challenge. As in many fields -- not least in public health -- the evidence base is insufficient and contested. Even when the evidence is reasonably clear, its significance, or the appropriate conclusions to be drawn from it, may be interpreted very differently according to the viewpoint of the observer. (excerpt)
In: State of the art: AIDS and economics, edited by Steven Forsythe. Washington, D.C., Futures Group International, POLICY Project, 2002 Jul. 58-63.The Declaration of Commitment of the United Nations General Assembly Special Session on HIV/AIDS (UNGASS) calls for spending on HIV/AIDS programs to increase to US$7-10 billion annually by 2005. The Declaration specifies a number of goals at the global and national level and calls for specific actions to reach those goals, but it does not specify how the funding should be allocated. The Report of the Commission on Macroeconomics and Health estimates that spending on HIV/AIDS in low- and middle-income countries should increase by US$14 billion by 2007 and suggests that US$6 billion is needed for prevention, US$3 billion for care, and US$5 billion for antiretroviral (ARV) treatment. A detailed estimate of spending requirements prepared for UNGASS calls for minimum spending of US$9.2 billion annually by 2005 in low- and middle-income countries to provide coverage of essential prevention, care, and mitigation services in an effort to reach the UNGASS goals. Details of spending needs by category of intervention are shown in Figure 1. A recent analysis shows that these coverage levels are sufficient to achieve the UNGASS goals. However no analysis has been done to show whether this is the most cost-effective approach to achieving these goals or whether the same goals could be reached with less funding and a more strategic allocation of resources. (excerpt)
In: State of the art: AIDS and economics, edited by Steven Forsythe. Washington, D.C., Futures Group International, POLICY Project, 2002 Jul. 2-8.Policymakers need a reasonably complete picture of resource flows from sources to uses that finance HIV/AIDS prevention, care, support, and treatment. Without that picture, they risk misallocation, waste, and faulty strategic planning. For now, in most parts of the developing world, the picture remains largely unpainted. Filling in the details on financing is among the key challenges to HIV/AIDS policymakers today. Limited data for Latin American and Caribbean (LAC) region countries offer virtually the only cases of adequate resource flow data outside the United States. Those countries spent a thousand dollars per person living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA) in 2000. The U.S. federal government’s Medicaid program for indigents spent 35 times as much for each AIDS patient under its care in that same year. Low-income countries, largely dependent on donor assistance, spent far less per person and per PLWHA—as little as 31 cents per person, and eight dollars per PLWHA in sub-Saharan Africa. These enormous disparities underline a dual challenge: First, use what little money is available in poor countries very effectively; and second, demonstrate to all concerned that more resources must be forthcoming to confront the HIV/AIDS pandemic in poor countries, lest the negative effects swamp any effort to develop. (author's)
Manila, Philippines, WHO, Regional Office for the Western Pacific, 2003. 21 p.Broadening health promotion financing arrangements contributes to the goal of health improvement shared by the countries of the Western Pacific Region. Health promotion that is sustainable underpins stable and effective mechanisms to ensure access by all to quality health services. Health promotion in the Western Pacific Region can be viewed as a public health intervention and a social enterprise. The financing implications of these perspectives are: Health promotion as a public health intervention - funds spent on keeping the population healthy versus treating the sick could improve efficiency within the same level of resources. Health promotion as a social enterprise - the "wellness of all" can be a rallying point at the community level where social, political and economic capital can be mobilized through partnerships, networks, coalitions, alliances, public-private collaboration, multi-sectoral groups, local or state initiatives or a combination of any of these. (excerpt)
International Journal for Equity in Health. 2002 Apr 22; 1(1): p..The purposes of this bibliography are to present an overview of the published literature on equity in health and to summarize key articles relevant to the mission of the International Society for Equity in Health (ISEqH). The intent is to show the directions being taken in health equity research including theories, methods, and interventions to understand the genesis of inequities and their remediation. Therefore, the bibliography includes articles from the health equity literature that focus on mechanisms by which inequities in health arise and approaches to reducing them where and when they exist. (author's)
Social Science and Medicine. 2003 Nov; 57(9):1547-1557.Spurred on by donors, a number of developing countries are in the midst of fundamental health and population sector reform. Focused on the performance-oriented norms of efficiency and effectiveness, reformers have paid insufficient attention to the process-oriented norms of sovereignty and democracy. As a result, citizens of sovereign states have been largely excluded from the deliberative process. This paper draws on political science and public administration theory to evaluate the Bangladeshi reform experience. It does so with reference to the norms of efficiency, effectiveness, sovereignty and democracy as a means of making explicit the values that need to be considered in order to make health and population sector reform a fair process. (author's)