Feachem addresses mobilizing global efforts
Dr. Richard Feachem (photo by: Saul Bromberger)
The tsunami disaster has brought the plight of countless lives lost
and suffering to the world stage. The imminent spread of disease and
lack of medical attention for survivors has increased awareness on global
health issues. These concerns are exactly what Dr. Richard Feachem,
Executive Director of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and
Malaria has been working on for the past 30 years.
Feachem, professor of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, was the
founding director of 's Institute for Global Health in 1999, appointed
by then Dean Haile T. Debas. Feachem set its overall mission as
improving health and increasing access to effective and affordable health
services in all countries, according to IGH Interim Director Dr.
Much of the conceptual work for the Global Fund was done at IGH
by Dr. Feachem and Carol A. Medlin, PhD, said Rutherford. They
explored the concept of a global public good and laid much
of the practical groundwork for the malaria control aspects of the Global
Fund through a comprehensive worldwide review of WHO's Roll Back Malaria
Feachem, a British national, was appointed the first Executive Director
of the Global Fund in 2002. In two years, the fund has approved grants
totaling $3.1 billion in 127 countries to fight the annual death toll
of 6 million people due to AIDS, TB and Malaria. $253 million was allocated
to four countries that sustained the most devastation by the tsunami-
India, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, and Thailand.
The Global Fund is three years old, said Feachem at a board
meeting last November. And as it moves forward we face the dual
challenge of making current grants work as quickly and effectively as
possible and raising more money to meet the urgent need to scale up
prevention and treatment in countries with acute needs.
Still holding a faculty appointment at , Feachem is returning to
speak next month at a symposium to launch Global Health Sciences,
a new campuswide initiative led by Executive Director Haile T. Debas.
Our program's launch would not be official without the presence
of Richard Feachem whose vision and commitment to solving global health
issues is a beacon for us, said Debas.
Global Health Sciences will be working with institutions around the
world in health, biological, social, and policy sciences on a range
of diseases that threaten this and future generations.
At the symposium, Feachem will focus on mobilizing an effective response
to the global health crisis. The world faces a number of global
health crises, said Feachem. Our response to these has been
insufficient in scale and inappropriate in the balance between national
and international responsibilities. This situation is beginning to change
and these changes will be discussed with special reference to the work
of the Global Fund and the need for larger and better coordinated efforts
in the field of global health research.
Source: Suzie Larsen