Global Health Policy Center Monthly Newsletter: April 2017

Dear colleague,
Welcome to the April newsletter from the Global Health Policy Center (GHPC) at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS)! We invite you to catch up on our latest content.

New Content:

  • CSIS Task Force on Women’s and Family Health: On Monday, March 20, the Task Force launched its final report, Her Health, Her Lifetime, Our World. The report lays out a bold vision for a major U.S. initiative by the Trump administration with the goal of securing the health and prospects of adolescent girls and young women in 13 low-income countries. In addition to pronounced economic and security benefits, the proposed initiative promises profound health impacts.

    The report launch was marked by a large, public event featuring several members of the Task Force, including Senator Susan Collins (R-ME), Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), and Representative Barbara Lee (D-CA). Task Force members discussed how best to advance this initiative in the White House and Congress, aided by the concerted efforts of the private sector, foundations, universities, NGOs, and the faith community. Audio and video recordings of the event can be found here.

    Other related products include an executive summarya video from Task Force member Christy Turlington Burns, an interactive version of the report, and an op-ed from Task Force members Representatives Daniel M. Donovan (R-NY) and Mike Quigley (D-IL).
  • Nigeria: On Tuesday, March 14, we hosted a conference to discuss solutions to Nigeria’s health challenges. Participants from Nigeria and the United States outlined policy ideas and program innovations to improve the quality and reach of healthcare in Africa’s most populous country while emphasizing the importance of sustained health engagement with Nigeria. Former Ondo State Governor Olusegun Mimiko also offered a keynote lunch address during the conference. A full video of the conference, along with a transcript of his remarks and the presentations of the speakers can be viewed here.

    Two trip reports were also launched during the conference. In Promoting Accountability in Nigeria’s Health System, CSIS Africa Program Deputy Director and Fellow Richard Downie examines how to sustain and scale up the pockets of Nigeria’s health system that continue to deliver good services in spite of a gloomy health picture, and considers what the new U.S. administration can do to engage most effectively with Nigeria on health. Tackling Infectious Diseases in Nigeria: Turning the Tide on Tuberculosis and Accelerating towards Malaria Elimination, by Audrey Jackson, GHPC Senior Fellow, and Deen L. Garba, Program Coordinator and Research Assistant, examine the burden of tuberculosis (TB) and malaria, ongoing control efforts, and U.S. programmatic investments. They recommend that the U.S. continue to invest wisely in Nigeria in ways that emphasize greater accountability, operational management to maximize return on investments, and high-level diplomacy to stimulate domestic resource mobilization. Richard and Audrey also discuss their trip findings in a new Take As Directed podcast episode, hosted by Deputy Director and Senior Fellow Sara M. Allinder.
Podcast Episodes:
  • UN Special Envoy on Tuberculosis Eric Goosby on Global Fight against TB: Since his appointment in 2015, United Nations Special Envoy on TB Eric Goosby has endeavored to raise the profile of TB among world leaders. In a new episode hosted by Audrey Jackson, Amb. Goosby reflects on the importance of continued U.S. leadership in the fight against the world's number one infectious disease killer, and the role of international diplomacy, including the upcoming UN High-level Meeting on TB in 2018.
  • John-Arne Rottingen on CEPI’s Advent and Next Steps: John-Arne Røttingen has served as the interim CEO for the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations, more commonly known as “CEPI”. Prior to assuming this role, he served as the Director of the Division of Infectious Disease Control at the Norwegian Institute of Public Health, where CEPI is currently headquartered. In a new episode, which I hosted, I asked him to reflect on CEPI’s advent and recent launch at the World Economic Forum in Davos last month, and to discuss next steps.
  • Our podcast series is available here and you can subscribe using the podcast app. 
  • India: Richard Downie and Deen Garba spent two weeks in India researching the U.S.-India health relationship, evaluating its strengths, and identifying areas of future collaboration. During meetings in Delhi, West Bengal, and Karnataka states, Indian interviewees highlighted the value of U.S. investments in disease surveillance, health workforce training, and piloting innovative health delivery projects. Look out for a final report and launch event later in the summer. In the meantime, expect shorter commentaries in the coming weeks examining innovative programs to train informal health workers and deliver more effective TB treatment.
  • Geneva: Senior Fellow Nellie Bristol spoke March 30 at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva. She discussed her paper describing policy options for the U.S. government when considering the repurposing of the polio eradication infrastructure. As the number of polio cases dwindles, funding for the program will decline, potentially compromising low-income country immunization systems that now rely on polio resources to provide services. The U.S. government has been a critical partner throughout the program’s nearly 30-year history, providing technical assistance, policy advice, and funding. Its involvement will be essential to sustaining immunization, containment, and surveillance activities necessary to ensure long term polio cessation. In addition, with proper support and planning, polio resources can boost immunization levels more broadly and improve global health security to help protect Americans from infectious disease.
Upcoming Events:
  • Today From 5:00pm to 6:30pm, we will host a public roundtable discussion on new policies and actions by the Trump administration and Congress vis-à-vis global health, implications for the US academic community and its partners, and likely scenarios for the future. The discussion will feature Jennifer Kates, Vice President and Director of Global Health and HIV Policy at the Kaiser Family Foundation; Liz Schrayer, President and CEO of the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition; and Chris Beyrer, Director for Public Health and Human Rights, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. The event is oversubscribed for in-person participation. However, you can watch the webcast here.
  • April 7-9: The 8th Annual Consortium of Universities for Global Health (CUGH) Conference will take place from April 7-9 at the Washington Hilton Hotel. As an organizing partner, CSIS will convene two sessions. The first will be a plenary, “Where does Global Health Fit in U.S. Foreign Policy and Security Interests?” held from 2:30-4pm on Friday, April 7. The second will be a panel discussion, “Addressing Data and Research Gaps to Advance the Health of Adolescent Girls and Young Women,” held from 4:30-6pm on Saturday, April 8. For more information, and to register for the conference, visit   
  • April 20: Global humanitarian crises, new political leadership in the U.S. and elsewhere, and a climate of fiscal austerity are reshaping the landscape for global health financing. In this context, global health financing faces a challenging and uncertain future. On Thursday, April 20 from 2:30-4 pm, in partnership with the Kaiser Family Foundation, we will host a policy briefing to discuss the current state of global health financing and the future landscape, with a panel of leading experts. Joseph Dieleman, Assistant Professor at the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation, will present new findings on financing for global health from IHME’s latest report and two new articles in The Lancet, followed by a discussion with panelists including Christopher J.L. Murray, Professor and Director at the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation; Tim Evans, Senior Director of Health, Nutrition and Population at the World Bank Group; and myself. Jen Kates, Director, Global Health and HIV Policy at Kaiser Family Foundation, will moderate. Register here.

As always, I welcome your questions and comments.


J. Stephen Morrison
Senior Vice President and Director, Global Health Policy Center
Center for Strategic and International Studies