Facing uncertain future funding, countries receiving grants from the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria have used what they know about their own epidemics to redirect money to programs where it will have its greatest impact, the latest edition of Aidspan’s Global Fund Observer reports.
The Fund has encouraged the effort during renewal or review of grants but countries can reallocate funds at any time, according to the article. A large number of grants among the 150 countries where Global Fund money is disbursed have been allocated from “low impact” to “higher impact” use, Zambia fund portfolio manager Paul McCarrick told Science Speaks.
In Zambia, that meant reducing money for communication programs geared toward “behavioral change,” and using the dollars to give training and a monthly allowance for 4600 workers who help AIDS and tuberculosis patients maintain challenging treatment regimens, McCarrick wrote in an email. Funds to pay those workers were not previously allotted, according to the GFO article.
Funding for palliative care of chronically and terminally ill patients also was reduced in Zambia, as the number of patients needing it is expected to drop when more are able to stay on treatment, McCarrick wrote.
Areas in which funds are considered to have their highest impact are antiretroviral treatment, prevention of mother to child transmission, HIV counseling and testing, male circumcision and support for orphans and children affected by AIDS, McCarrick wrote.
Zimbabwe used money that had been spent on communication programs to enhance tuberculosis diagnosis and to support collaborative HIV/TB programs, the GFO article reports.
Countries also have reallocated funds to sustain TB and HIV treatment in the aftermath of natural disasters.