Sourcing & Management of Health Products

The Global Fund / Karin Schermbrucker

COVID-19 Diagnostics Procurement through the Global Fund

15 May 2020

The Global Fund is working closely with key partners, international organizations, governments and technical agencies through a World Health Organization-led consortium to rapidly and equitably support access to COVID-19 health products and diagnostics for low- and middle-income countries.

WHO has designed a worldwide allocation model for products which covers 140 countries. The allocation is based on the WHO Country Office and Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention current diagnostic instrument mapping and considers each country’s population, health system vulnerability and testing capacity. WHO has allocated initial volumes from four major manufacturers to countries based on expected product availability and has communicated these volumes through their country offices.

Today, there is enormous global demand and limited supply availability for COVID-19 diagnostics.

Given the challenges in securing these diagnostic products, the Global Fund aims to follow the WHO allocation model for all its implementing countries and allow the use of grant funds, including C19RM funds, for the purchase of diagnostic products up to the allocation amount. If volumes are made available through other sources, the Global Fund will take those into account in its allocation. Available volumes are likely to be lower than demand, and the Global Fund will work closely with manufacturers to quickly allocate any additional volumes that become available, in line with a country’s registered demand as articulated in their C19RM funding request and/or as submitted to the WHO Supply Portal.

The Global Fund and UNICEF are the lead procurers for COVID-19 diagnostics and have secured production capacity with the four major manufacturers to operationalize the WHO allocation model and ensure equitable access to the available supplies. The Global Fund is procuring Cepheid and Abbott products, and UNICEF is procuring Thermo Fisher and Roche products.

Countries receiving Global Fund grants may purchase Abbott and Cepheid diagnostic tests using an accelerated order process through the Global Fund’s Supply Operations Department. Principal Recipients should reach out to UNICEF directly to purchase Roche or Thermo Fisher products, and to WHO for manual diagnostic tests.

The Global Fund will communicate detailed instructions on how to place orders for COVID-19 diagnostics directly to Principal Recipients.

The Global Fund has made additional support available through the COVID-19 Response Mechanism (C19RM). C19RM funding covers a country’s WHO allocation of COVID-19 diagnostics. The Global Fund website has information about the Response Mechanism, other grant flexibilities and health product supply to support implementing countries.