The Global Fund alters funding model to create bigger impact with existing national programs

The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria said on Wednesday that several partners discussed how a new funding model will support efforts to control AIDS and build sustainable health systems.

The Global Fund said many countries have their own programs to fight the disease, but additional resources can play a key role in reaching lower infection rates and increase long-term health interventions.

"We want to use the new funding model as an opportunity to strengthen the health system and we have to emphasize a community-based approach," Haiti Health Minister Florence Guillaume said. "By creating a foundation in countries like Haiti, we can have a better health impact and maintain the results obtained."

Guillaume said health investment is not a charity and can provide more access to health services, ensuring people will remain in good health.

"A good labor force is good for growth and that will reduce dependence on external donors," Guillaume said.

Meeting attendees determined a new funding model would make grants more effective and increase their impact.

"The new funding model offers the opportunity for civil society to access the country dialogue that it offers, with the possibility to give input into the concept note," Jaevion Nelson, the head of advocacy at Jamaica Forum of Lesbians, All-Sexuals and Gays, said.

Approximately $600 million will be allocated for Latin America and the Caribbean for 2014-2016, which is more than the region received during the past four years.

"There was a lot of dissatisfaction with the previous system which had a lot of bureaucratic hurdles," Global Fund Board Member for Latin America and the Caribbean Mirta Roses Periago said. "Now people see the rules of the game are clear from the allocation you are going to receive. In terms of simplicity, it's a very transparent process and you know what you are going to receive if you comply."

Under the new funding model, countries are encouraged to discuss where to allocate the funding with stakeholders, affected groups, technical partners and the private sector to achieve maximum impact.

Partners at the meeting included the Pan American Health Organization, the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS, the United Nations Development Program and the U.S. President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief.