Advocacy Updates ~ July 11, 2022
House Appropriations Committee approves FY23 SFOPS bill
On June 29, the House Appropriations Committee approved the FY 2023 State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs appropriations bill. The bill provides $64.57 billion in new discretionary budget authority, which is $8.475 billion above the fiscal year (FY) 2022 enacted level. It also includes approximately $11 billion for U.S. global health programs at the State Department and U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). Funding would be used to increase humanitarian and development assistance, strengthen global public health infrastructure, and combat climate change. It also seeks to promote democracy, human rights, anti-corruption efforts, advance gender equity and equality, and support allies and partners of the U.S. The bill is set to be considered for floor action the week of July 25 with a package of other appropriations bills. It is important to note that negotiations have stalled between House and Senate leaders on a bipartisan, bicameral agreement on topline spending levels for FY23, creating uncertainty around how much funding will be available. GHC released a statement welcoming a few notable increases for global health accounts, while noting these funding levels should be seen as the starting point for negotiations between the House and Senate, not the high watermark.
World Bank establishes financial intermediary fund for pandemic preparedness and response
On June 30, the World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors approved the establishment of a financial intermediary fund (FIF) to strengthen pandemic prevention, preparedness and response (PPR) in low- and middle-income countries. The fund already has more than $1 billion in pledges, though the WHO and World Bank estimate that $10.5 billion is needed annually. The U.S. administration has been a vocal proponent for the development of this type of fund and President Biden released a statement in support of the fund with an initial U.S. pledge of $450 million. GHC also released a statement welcoming the establishment of a FIF for PPR urging the World Bank to engage civil society and low- and middle-income countries in the fund’s governance.
Global health not a focus of G7 Leaders Summit and communiqué
G7 leaders released their communiqué following their summit on June 26-28. The discussions centered largely around Russia’s war in Ukraine and its fallout effects. However, the communiqué does include two sections on global health related to pandemic prevention, preparedness, and response (PPR), and improving the global health architecture. In the document, G7 leaders reaffirm their commitment to equitable access to affordable diagnostics, therapeutics, and vaccines for COVID-19 and agree to step up efforts in PPR through the G7 Pact for Pandemic Readiness. The global leaders also stated their support for the Seventh Replenishment of the Global Fund, as well as contributions to other relevant funds such as the Global Financing Facility (GFF) and the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI). Additionally, leaders have agreed to ramp up efforts to mitigate rising food prices and scarcity that have been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic and Russia’s war in Ukraine. With our partners at InterAction, GHC co-led the drafting of health recommendations for the G7.