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GHC NEWS FLASH: GLOBAL HEALTH ROUNDUP 3/20/2017

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Global Financing Facility Webinar Series Starts March 21

GHC and the Partnership for Maternal, Newborn, and Child Health (PMNCH) will host the first webinar in a three-part series on March 21 at 10:00 AM EDT to discuss feedback received on the draft Global Financing Facility (GFF) Civil Society Engagement Strategy. The strategy, developed by PMNCH in partnership with the GFF Secretariat, is intended to enhance civil society engagement in the GFF, a multi-stakeholder initiative that supports country-led efforts to improve reproductive, maternal, newborn, child, and adolescent health. The webinar will also provide an opportunity for partners to provide any additional feedback and recommendations. The draft is currently available in English and en Français. Learn more and register for the webinar series.


The Lucky Specials: A Movie Demystifying TB
The Lucky Specials, a film which seeks to educate viewers about the risk, prevention, and treatment of tuberculosis (TB), commemorates World TB Day 2017 on March 24. The movie tells the story of an aspiring cover band from a small South African mining town. On the verge of a huge career break, the band’s hopes and futures are cast in doubt as its key members are infected by TB. The film’s plot expertly addresses several misconceptions, treatment barriers, and stigma related to the disease. The movie makers, Discovery Learning Alliance (DLA), intend to broadcast the film throughout sub-Saharan Africa over the next several months. In addition, DLA is partnering with governments, community health workers, NGOs, schools, and the private sector to reach target audiences. A free download of the movie will be made available to the public in mid-2017. View the movie trailer.


Health Care Crisis in Syria Continues as Conflict Enters Its 7th Year
Last week marked six years of war and turmoil in the Syrian Arab Republic. Since the start of the Syrian crisis in 2011, civil unrest and armed conflict in the country have resulted in a rapidly increasing number of people being displaced both within and outside of Syria. The situation has created serious public health concerns, including: widespread malnutrition, mental health challenges, and low vaccination rates in children under the age of 5. More than half of the country’s health care facilities have been destroyed or damaged during attacks, while two-thirds of its health workers have fled to other countries for safety. Invisible Wounds, a new global report by GHC member Save the Children, highlights the mental impacts and psychological scars the conflict has left on the children of Syria. Read the report and learn how you can get involved in the ongoing response to the crisis.


Workshop on Best Practices for Global Health Experiential Learning
NAFSA: Association of International Educators, the Secondary Field in Global Health and Health Policy at Harvard University,  GHC member Child Family Health International, and GlobalSL will host a workshop at the CUGH conference on competencies, assessments, and other pedagogies of global health fieldwork on April 6 in Washington, DC. The workshop aims to build skills and resources to improve risk-management, optimize cross-cultural learning, deliver effective reflection, and create structures for program management and administration. It will bring together leaders in international and global health education to explore best practices to optimize global health experiential learning. View event and registration details.


Emerging NCD Crisis in Low- and Middle-Income Countries
A new report by The Economist Intelligence Unit examines the growing burden of noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) in developing countries. The report highlights cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and cancer as some of the leading contributors to the global NCD epidemic. It calls on donors to revise allocation priorities and for governments to address the various shortfalls and capacity constraints in their health systems, which limit a patient’s ability to access quality care and treatment. With a shortage of diagnostic tools and trained personnel across the developing world, the report emphasizes the need for innovative solutions such as mobile phone technology to improve the consistency and frequency of routine checks and management of chronic conditions. Read full report.

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GHC NEWS FLASH: GLOBAL HEALTH ROUNDUP 3/6/2017

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TFGH17 Draws A Packed House
Last Wednesday, more than 400 global health professionals came together at The Hamilton Live in Washington, DC, for an evening abound with excitement, informative exchanges, new connections, and a rich profusion of thought-provoking discussions. Co-hosted by GHC and Global Health Fellows Program II (GHFP-II), the fourth annual The Future of Global Health (TFGH17) unconference attracted an unprecedented number of participants, ranging from early-level to seasoned professionals, with diverse backgrounds and experience across several major global health themes. Key conversations included: leadership, technology, gender equality, and research and development. “The general idea of an unconference and the opportunities it presents for networking, collaboration, and knowledge sharing is what attracted me to this event. I’ve had a phenomenal time,” said one participant. View highlights from the event.


Attend the CUGH-GHC 2017 Global Health Career Fair
Join GHC and CUGH for a Global Health Career Fair on April 6 in Washington, DC. Attendance for participants is free, but please register in advance. The Career Fair will showcase information about academic programs, courses, and employment opportunities from employers and others working in the global health/development space! Meet prospective employers, university representatives, and faculty from a wide range of organizations. The following day the 8th Annual CUGH Conference, which attracts nearly 2,000 global health leaders, faculty, students and implementers, will begin.


GHC at the Seventieth World Health Assembly (WHA)
GHC and many of its members and partners will attend the Seventieth World Health Assembly (WHA) in Geneva, Switzerland at the end of May. GHC will again send a delegation of its members to WHA, provide hotel room blocks, host a special calendar events online, and organize side-events throughout the week. More details regarding GHC at WHA, and how to get involved, will be released next week. In the meantime, check out last year’s GHC WHA activitiesPlease note that you must be a GHC member in good standing (paid dues for 2017) to apply for GHC’s WHA delegation. 


PMNCH Seeks Public Consultation on Global Financing Facility Civil Society Engagement Strategy
The Global Financing Facility (GFF), officially launched in July 2015, is a multi-stakeholder partnership that supports country-led efforts to improve reproductive, maternal, newborn, child, and adolescent health (RMNCAH). Civil society is a critical RMNCAH stakeholder with significant value, expertise, and skills to bring to the GFF at country and global levels, working towards mutual goals to end preventable deaths of women, newborns, children, and adolescents by 2030. In order to enhance civil society engagement in the GFF, a group of civil society stakeholders began a process in late 2016, to develop a comprehensive Civil Society Engagement Strategy. The draft strategy, developed by PMNCH in partnership with the GFF Secretariat, is now available in English and en Français. You can provide comments on the draft strategy through the public consultation portal until March 13.


 Gavi CSO Steering Committee Issues a Call for Nominations
Gavi CSO Steering Committee representatives bring a unique and valuable perspective to the work of Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance (Gavi), as well as important organizational resources to support Gavi’s mission. In addition, each of the civil society organizations represented plays a different part in ensuring that vaccines reach children. Applications to fill five vacancies on the Gavi CSO Steering Committee are now open. Particular consideration will be given to nominations coming from countries that have not previously been represented on the Gavi CSO Steering Committee, as well as from countries that are not currently represented (see Steering Committee profiles). Completed nominations should be submitted by March 24. View the full call for nominations.


 Georgia Tech Offers Course on Health and Humanitarian Supply Chain Management
The Georgia Tech Center for Health & Humanitarian Systems (CHHS) will offer the annual Professional Certificate Program in Health & Humanitarian Supply Chain Management from May 15 – 20 at Georgia Tech’s Global Learning Center. The certificate program is designed for practitioners in private industry, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), government, military, and others who are active participants or interested in health and humanitarian operations. There are a limited number of scholarships available (for those applying from NGOs or developing countries). Priority will be given to early applicants. Please e-mail Meghan Smithgall with any questions or to inquire about applying for a scholarship.


WHO Publishes List of Antibiotic Resistant Pathogens
In recent decades, the emergence of drug-resistant superbugs have become a global threat, hampering our ability to effectively treat infections such as tuberculosis, malaria, and gonorrhea. Last Monday, the World Health Organization (WHO) published its first ever list of antibiotic-resistant “priority pathogens,” to highlight 12 families of bacteria that pose the greatest threat to humankind. The new tool will serve as a guide to promote research and development (R&D) of new antibiotics in response to urgent public health needs. “If we leave it to market forces alone, the new antibiotics we most urgently need are not going to be developed in time,” said Dr. Marie-Paule Kieny, WHO Assistant Director-General for Health Systems and Innovation. View the press release.

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Global Health Roundup 2/20/2017
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Global Health Community Demonstrates Why #GlobalHealthWorks
On February 15, GHC and the global health community were on Capitol Hill to launch the latest version of the Global Health Briefing Book, Global Health Works: Maximizing U.S. Investments for Healthier and Stronger Communitiesa set of community-led recommendations for policymakers regarding global health priorities. Earlier in the day, GHC members and partners visited congressional offices to share statistics and stories of returns on U.S. investments. The day culminated with an expo of stakeholders across multiple sectors showcasing their work and impact in global health worldwide. GHC President and Executive Director Loyce Pace further delved into the significant return on investment from U.S. global health programs worldwide in a recent op-ed published by The Hill. In her op-ed, Loyce notes that for less than 1 percent of the federal budget, global health investments have yielded impressive results above and beyond their original price tag, and are poised for even greater returns in the future. View the briefing book, check out our Storify of the launch, and read Loyce’s op-ed.


Population Reference Bureau Releases New Data
New evidence suggests that the share of women and girls that have undergone female genital mutilation/cutting is declining in many countries, with girls less likely to be cut than in previous generations of women. A statistical wallchart from GHC member Population Reference Bureau (PRB), Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting: Data and Trends Update 2017, produced with support from U.S Agency for International Development (USAID), provides the latest data on the practice from 29 developing countries. Despite the declining prevalence in many countries, the total number of women and girls undergoing FGM/C continues to rise in absolute terms due to population growth. For more information, and to order a print version of the wallchart, please contact communications@prb.org.

WHO Model List for Essential Diagnostics Is Underway
Since 1977, the World Health Organization (WHO) has maintained a Model List for Essential Medicines (EML) to serve as reference document in conceiving procurement plans for medicines that meet the priority health needs of the population. The EML has been a global success, especially for low- and middle-income countries, offering guidance to governments, nonprofits, and development partners in the allocation of their health budgets. Last month, WHO released a long-awaited proposal for the development of a Model List for Essential Diagnostics (EDL). This follows calls by GHC member Global Health Technologies Coalition (GHTC) and other partners for the agency to establish an EDL for vital diagnostics to compliment the EML. Read more.



Friends of the Global Fight Collects Global Fund Advocacy Videos 
Since December 2016, GHC member Friends of the Global Fight to End AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria (Friends of the Global Fight) has been building a case for sustained U.S. support of the Global Fund under the new administration and Congress. They are currently devising a new multimedia campaign, “The Letter,” to ensure that U.S. decision-makers hear these messages. The campaign will feature images of people directly impacted by Global Fund-supported programs. Friends of the Global Fight invites its partners to share video clips for its compilation. Please view this brief and sample video for guidance and inspiration on the general tone the campaign seeks to capture. The deadline for submission is February 28. For questions and support, please email friends@theglobalfight.org.

Women in Global Health Issues Call for Applications
Women in Global Health (WGH) believes that diverse, gender-balanced leadership is key to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and is working to give all genders an equal voice in the global health arena. WGH invites interested parties to join their team and help support their mission. Candidates from all genders, backgrounds, and stages of their career from around the world are welcome to apply for a number of available positions. Applications will remain open through February 28. Please send any questions to info@womeningh.org.

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GHC NEWS FLASH: GLOBAL HEALTH ROUNDUP 2/6/2017


Highlights from the 140th WHO Executive Board Session

GHC hosted a delegation of its members representing multiple sectors and priorities to the recent WHO Executive Board (EB) session (January 23 – February 1). GHC delegates tracked the discussion of key agenda items ranging from global health security and polio to R&D and non-communicable diseases, and some read statements to the EB on these topics. They also had an opportunity to liaise with Member State representatives, including a joint meeting with the U.S. delegation and WHO staff. Reactions to the statements and additional takeaways from the meeting will be posted to GHC’s blog, The Collective Voice. For those interested, GHC will open the application process for its delegation to World Health Assembly (WHA) in May next month.

During the WHO EB session, three remaining candidates for the position of WHO Director-General were announced. Ethiopia’s Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Pakistan’s Sania Nishtar, and Britain’s David Nabarro will face off in a final vote to be cast by WHO Member States at WHA. GHC will continue to provide updates on this election process.


Addendum Issued to Global Financing Facility (GFF) Report
In the fall of 2015, GHC member RESULTS commissioned Global Health Visions and Catalysts for Change to undertake an analysis of civil society engagement and consultation in the development of Investment Cases in the four GFF front-runner countries. The analysis provided insights on successes and challenges in civil society engagement reported by key stakeholders, as well as lessons learned and recommendations for enhancing civil society engagement moving forward. An addendum has been developed to supplement the original report with more current information. View the addendum.


Johns Hopkins Hosts Health Systems Summer Institute
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health is hosting its Health Systems Summer Institute from June 12 to June 23. The Institute provides public health professionals with the skills necessary to address the key health systems issues of today. The courses are a great way for early- and mid-career professionals to expand their skill sets and improve their job performance. Last year’s participants came from organizations such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Jhpiego, and the National Cancer Institute. Registration officially opens on February 13. Visit the Institute’s website for more information.


Zika: One Year Later
On February 1, 2016, WHO Director-General Dr. Margaret Chan announced that the Zika virus was a public health emergency of international concern. Following its appearance in the Americas in 2015, cases of the outbreak have since been identified in 70 countries worldwide, including regions in Asia, Africa, and the Western Pacific. Zika has once again revealed the weaknesses in our global preparedness to handle epidemics. However, the global community has demonstrated a strong and united front in responding to Zika, with more than 60 global and local partners, including WHO, committing to sustained and long-term efforts to combat the disease. Recent studies have helped identify potential surveillance systems to provide early warning of Zika outbreaks in low-resource countries. Read the latest statement on Zika from Dr. Chan..


2nd Annual Aid & Development Summit 
The 2nd annual Aid & Development Africa Summit will take place from February 28 to March 1 in Nairobi, Kenya with an aim to explore how best practices can improve aid delivery and development strategy in sub-Saharan East Africa. Over 300 decision-makers from a variety of sectors, including: government, NGOs, development banks, and the private sector, will gather to discuss innovations in areas such as health and WASH; maternal and child health; and communicable diseases. If you are a GHC member and would like to be a part of the Summit, email marketing@aidforum.org.

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GHC News Flash: Global Health Roundup 1/9/2017
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Major Ebola Vaccine Clinical Trial Concludes
The global health community wrapped up an eventful year with the conclusion of a major clinical trial which evaluated the effectiveness of a new Ebola vaccine on 6,000 subjects in Guinea. The one-year trial was led by the WHO, Guinea’s Ministry of Health, Médecins Sans Frontières, and other international partners. Findings from the trial reveal that the new vaccine is up to 100 percent effective. “While these compelling results come too late for those who lost their lives during the West Africa Ebola epidemic, they show that when the next Ebola outbreak hits, we will not be defenseless,” said Dr. Marie-Paul Kieny, WHO Assistant Director-General for Health Systems and Innovation, and the study’s lead author. Read more.
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Upcoming World Economic Forum Annual Meeting
In 2016, the world marked one year since the adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Some of the achievements that were made in that year include the signing of a historical climate change agreement, renewing efforts towards gender equality, and advancing the Global Health Security Agenda. At this year’s World Economic Forum, leading voices in business and global development will meet in Davos, Switzerland to discuss ways we can build on this momentum and further our progress in solving global issues. A major highlight at this event will be the launch of the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), a new global effort that seeks to stop future epidemics by developing timely vaccines.
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Gates Foundation Invests in New HIV Prevention Device
The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation recently committed to investing up to 140 million dollars towards the development of a new HIV prevention device. The device, a small implantable drug pump, is being developed by Intarcia Therapeutics, Inc. to facilitate the delivery of antiretroviral medicines over extended periods of time. This will help ensure that patients on HIV treatment do not miss a single dose. While it might take several years to get the device onto the market, the agreement between the Gates Foundation and Intarcia Therapeutics, Inc. is intended to make sure that the intervention is accessible and affordable to low resource populations in the developing world. Read more.
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Call for Applications: Alan Fagil Fellowship
GHC member American Society for Tropical Medicine and Hygiene (ASTMH) has launched a fellowship in honor of the legacy of Alan J. Fagil, a celebrated leader in the global tropical medicine community. The fellowship is targeted towards early-to-mid-career ASTMH members in low- and middle-income countries and will support leadership development in tropical medicine. The recipient will receive funding of up to $50,000 over a period of two years. Deadline for submission is February 1. View the Call for Concept Papers for more details.
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