DearColleague.us

Letter

Barbara Lee

From the office of:

Barbara Lee

Sending Office: Honorable Barbara Lee
Sent By:
Gregory.Adams@mail.house.gov

        Request for Signature(s)

Don’t let COVID overwhelm the fight
against HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria

Deadline: COB Wednesday, April 22
To sign on, please fill out THIS FORM.

Dear Colleague:

As Members of Congress committed to responding to the emergency posed by COVID-19 and to ending the epidemics of AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria, we urge you to join this letter to Speaker Pelosi and Leader McCarthy calling for a U.S. contribution of $1 billion
to the Global Fund’s COVID-19 Response Mechanism as part of future COVID-19-related supplemental funding.  This allocation would provide desperately needed emergency support to countries to address COVID-19 and protect fragile gains in the response to AIDS,
TB and malaria.   

As COVID-19 spreads to developing countries, it threatens to derail years of progress fighting HIV, TB, and malaria by disrupting essential prevention and treatment services and interrupting supply chains for critical drugs and medical equipment. Experience
from recent Ebola outbreaks in Africa has shown that unless mitigating action is taken, the additional death toll from AIDS, TB, and malaria could well exceed the number of deaths from COVID-19 itself. COVID-19 is on a trajectory to overwhelm communities and
health systems in developing countries with potentially catastrophic consequences.  Recent efforts to reprogram existing funds
will exhaust the Global Fund’s available funding to respond to COVID-19.

An immediate and substantial injection of funding is needed to help developing countries respond to COVID-19 while maintaining essential diagnostic, prevention, and treatment services for AIDS, TB, malaria, and other diseases.

The Global Fund has enjoyed broad bipartisan support since its founding, including bipartisan support for the recent appropriations letter led by Congresswoman Lee and Congresswoman Wagner in support of FY21 funding for efforts combat AIDS globally. We hope
that you will join us in urging the Speaker Pelosi and Leader McCarthy to continue U.S. support. To sign on, please fill out
THIS FORM. If you have any questions, please contact Gregory Adams (Rep. Lee) at gregory.adams@mail.house.gov or Caroline Buyak (Rep. Roby) at caroline.buyak@mail.house.gov.

Sincerely,

Barbara Lee                                                    Martha Roby
Member of Congress                                      Member of Congress

 

 

April 22, 2020

The Honorable Nancy Pelosi
Speaker, U.S. House of Representatives
H-232, The Capitol
Washington, D.C. 20515

The Honorable Kevin McCarthy
Republican Leader
H-204, The Capitol
Washington, D.C. 20515

Dear Speaker Pelosi and Leader McCarthy,

We write in support of a U.S. contribution of $1 billion to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria’s COVID-19 Response Mechanism as part of future COVID-19-related supplemental funding.  This allocation would provide emergency support to
countries to address COVID-19 and protect fragile gains in the response to AIDS, TB and malaria. 

COVID-19 represents an existential threat to ongoing efforts against the epidemics of AIDS, TB, malaria.  The Global Fund has already taken several steps to mitigate the damage.  On March 4 the Global Fund announced that it was making $500 million available
to implementing countries for crucial COVID-19 response activities. On April 9, the Global Fund’s Board unanimously approved an additional $500 million in existing funding for the new COVID-19 Response Mechanism to help countries fight COVID-19 and mitigate
its impact on health systems, particularly AIDS, TB, and malaria programs.

The ultimate amount of external funding needed to help developing countries cope with COVID-19 and mitigate its harm to health systems is unknown; however, the
UN currently estimates that an additional $500 billion is needed for emergency health services and related programs. Additionally,

a group of 165 leaders and experts
wrote an April 6 letter to the G-20 citing the need for $35 billion to support countries with weaker health systems and especially vulnerable populations, plus an immediate $8 billion need to fill gaps in COVID-19 response
capacity based on the estimate of the
Global Preparedness Monitoring Board
.

The Global Fund has enjoyed broad bipartisan support from both the House of Representatives and our colleagues in the Senate.  This support has been maintained because the Global Fund has consistently demonstrated concrete progress in saving lives. The Global
Fund’s primary advantage is that it can rapidly deliver funding to existing local partners in over 100 countries – with all of the same accountability and transparency it has shown in disbursing roughly $4 billion per year in grant funding. The organization
has deep experience in funding the infrastructure and capabilities needed to defeat COVID-19: medical supply chains, laboratories, community health workers, and disease surveillance.

U.S. investment at a time like this does more than fight disease – it helps keep Americans safe. Health security knows no borders and pandemics can bounce back on U.S. citizens. As COVID-19 spreads to developing countries, it threatens to derail years of
progress fighting HIV, TB, and malaria by disrupting essential prevention and treatment services and interrupting supply chains for critical drugs and medical supplies. Experience from recent Ebola outbreaks in Africa has shown that unless mitigating action
is taken, the additional death toll from AIDS, TB, and malaria could well exceed the number of deaths from COVID-19 itself. COVID-19 is on a trajectory to overwhelm communities and health systems in developing countries with potentially catastrophic consequences. 

Because of its results-oriented, efficient and transparent approach, the Global Fund has received high marks in multilateral aid reviews. Independent watchdogs with the highest standards, including the Multilateral Organization Performance Assessment Network
(MOPAN), agree.
The U.S. government served as the institutional lead for MOPAN’s recent assessment
, which commended the Global Fund for its clear strategic direction, risk management, transparency, accountability, and “low operational budget.”  The Global Fund has a

strong, independent Inspector General
office that reports directly to the Global Fund board and has effective
whistleblower and
audit functions.

The Global Fund and the U.S. bilateral programs have worked diligently to increasingly integrate their planning and programming over the years. PEPFAR, PMI, and USAID have come to depend on the Global Fund as a trusted partner in saving lives and strengthening
health systems.

Our investment in the Global Fund’s COVID-19 Resource Mechanism will no doubt motivate other donors to contribute, just as our commitments in fiscal year 2020 encouraged countries to come forth with strong pledges for the 6th Replenishment. 

Importantly, with the establishment of the COVID-19 Response Mechanism the Global Fund is not straying from its core mandate. Indeed, if it does not address the grave challenge presented by COVID-19, the Global Fund, its donors, and their partners risk losing
the progress they have fought so hard to achieve.

The U.S. has shown unparalleled leadership in global health.  We urge you to maintain that leadership, to set an example for the world, and to invest in defeating COVID-19 and AIDS, TB, and malaria through the Global Fund’s COVID-19 Response Mechanism.

Sincerely,

Related Legislative Issues

Selected legislative information:Appropriations, Foreign Affairs

Related Deadline Information

Deadline Title: DEADLINE
Deadline Start: 4/22/2020 5:00:00 PM
Deadline End: 4/22/2020 5:00:00 PM

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