03 December 2013
WASHINGTON D.C. – U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry called on global health partners to embrace all available tools to defeat AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria, saying that shared responsibility was the only way to succeed.
Speaking at a partnership symposium with other leaders during the launch of the Global Fund’s Fourth Replenishment, Secretary Kerry said advances in science and implementation have brought us to “the cusp of a really remarkable victory.”
“The fight against HIV/AIDS is the challenge of our generation in many ways,” said Secretary Kerry. “And it is an enduring challenge, but thanks to landmark scientific advances and the grit and determination of many of you here in this room, we actually have put an AIDS-free generation within sight.”
Entitled: “No Time to Lose: Sharing the Responsibility to Save Lives,” the Replenishment launch is convening leaders in global health in Washington to consider joint action and to secure sustained funding for the next three years to support programs that prevent, treat and care for people with AIDS, TB and malaria.
Dr. Nafsiah Mboi, Indonesia’s Minister of Health and Chair of the Board of the Global Fund, mentioned her career in medicine that began nearly 50 years ago as a doctor in a remote, poor province in Indonesia, and cited the tremendous changes in how governments and other partners treat key affected populations.
Pascal Canfin, France’s Deputy Minister for Development, reaffirmed France’s commitment of €1.08 billion (US$1.4 billion) to the Global Fund for the 2014-2016 period, and urged the world to seize the historic opportunity to defeat AIDS.
“We are the first generation of political leaders who can achieve the dream of a generation free of AIDS. We don’t have the right to fail.”
C.O. Onyebuchi Chukwu, Nigeria’s Federal Minister of Health, said African countries were on the right track by sharing the responsibility and making increased investments in health.
Justine Greening, Secretary of State for International Development, spoke about the imperative of getting value for money in major investments, and cited the Global Fund’s recent advances in procurement as a good example of innovative approaches that must be expanded.
The partnership symposium was moderated by Mark Dybul, Executive Director of the Global Fund, and other participants included Michel Sidibe, Executive Director of UNAIDS, Anthony Lake, Executive Director of UNICEF, and Richard Kamwi, Minister of Health and Social Services for Namibia.
Secretary Kerry also cited recent reforms about the Global Fund as one of the causes of the major commitment made by the U.S Government.
“No other international organization has undergone such profound changes in its business model, its management team, and the financial systems that have swept through the Global Fund over the course of this last decade,” said Secretary Kerry. “It’s important to underscore the reforms are not cosmetic. They are real. They’re tangible. And they are going to help save more lives, there’s no question.”