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Global Fund cuts funding for malaria grant

01 March 2005

Senegal Grant Falls Short Of 2-Year Targets

Geneva, Switzerland – The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria today declined to approve additional funding for a second phase for one of its earliest grant proposals. The grant, with the proposed 5 year-budget of US$ 7.1 million, to fight malaria in Senegal, was found to have systemic issues that resulted in poor performance. The Global Fund is encouraging Senegal to address the issues which led to weak performance and apply for new funds in the future.

The Global Fund approves grant proposals covering a period of up to five years, and agrees upon a work plan and performance targets with the grant recipient when the grant is signed. Funds are initially committed for the first two years of the proposal period. Continued funding to cover the remainder of the proposal period depends on satisfactory performance measured against these agreed targets for the first two years of a grant’s life. Through the Phase 2 evaluation process, funds which are unlikely to be spent, or have been committed to underperforming grants, can be diverted to new grants.

The current Phase 2 assessment is the first time the Global Fund has implemented the process by which grants undergo evaluation for performance in combating the three diseases, to receive funding for a second phase. This first process resulted in the approval of 21 grants for a Phase 2 period with a total value of US$ 119 million, one grant formally discontinued (Senegal) and three others which are currently under review by the Board.

Measured against the goals and work plan agreed to by the principal recipient of the grant and the Global Fund at grant signing, review of the Senegal malaria grant – awarded in the first round of grant applications to the Global Fund – raised serious concerns as to its effective use of Global Fund resources. Although the Board of the Global Fund does not take a decision of this kind lightly, indicators gathered over the past two years and the recently completed Phase 2 evaluation showed significant systemic problems with the grant.

The Global Fund’s decision regarding the Senegal malaria grant in no way reflects a rejection of this country’s future resource needs, or of ongoing support for other grants in Senegal. In addition, all recipients to whom a second phase of grant funding is not approved are strongly encouraged to address existing problems or to restructure grant needs and reapply for funding in future rounds. The fifth round of proposals will be open for application on 17 March and qualifying grants will be approved by the Board at its meeting at the end of September.

With respect to two others of the first grants evaluated for Phase 2 funding (Laos PDR Round 1 HIV, and Senegal Round 1 HIV), the Board disagreed with the recommendation of the Global Fund Secretariat. These recommendations have therefore been returned to the Secretariat for reconsideration, and a follow-up recommendation will be issued on 1 April 2005.

The Global Fund now has US$ 3.1 billion approved for the first two years of grants in 127 countries. New grant agreements have been signed almost monthly for the last two years, so evaluation of maturing grants will now become a regular part of Global Fund business operations.

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