Why the United States Must Sustain Global Health Investments
By: Loyce Pace, Global Health Council & Maria Thacker, Georgia Global Health Alliance
Global health organizations work around the world to ensure healthier lives for all people. Continued robust funding for global health is critical to reaching the finish line on bold global health initiatives to which countries around the world have committed resources and initiatives. These targets include achieving an AIDS-free generation; ending preventable child and maternal deaths; and eradicating polio, Guinea worm, measles, and malaria.
U.S. investments in global health also draw attention to and prioritize solutions that address non-communicable and other neglected health threats that are increasingly affecting the economies of key U.S. trading partners globally. Investments also help protect the health of Americans by strengthening countries’ capacity to better prevent, detect, and respond to infectious disease outbreaks that know no borders. Take for example the Decatur based Task Force for Global Health. Not only is the organization helping drive the elimination of neglected tropical diseases and the eradication of polio, but it is also building capacity of developing countries to protect against disease threats such as Ebola and Zika.
Global health programs work. These programs are some of the most critical, cost-effective, and greatest successes of foreign aid. Furthermore, foreign assistance – which includes global health, as well as support for humanitarian relief, democracy and governance, disaster assistance, agriculture development, and education – is a critical component of how the United States engages with the world. By investing in global health and development, the United States helps to build healthier and more self-reliant communities, which are more economically and politically stable.
A recent alliance between the PAHO Foundation and MedShare will not only bring aid to communities in the Americas, but drive sustainable improvements in health including health impacts resulting from recent natural disasters. These Georgia-based organizations recognize how partnerships like this help to create long-term solutions that support development priorities while at the same time empowering individuals, families, and communities.
By maintaining U.S. investments in global health and our commitment to progress, we can continue to build on what has been achieved so far to end or prevent the persistent global health challenges of our time and ensure a healthy future for citizens around the world. Moreover, Americans consistently support global health and development assistance funding.
Georgia is a major hub of global health innovation, with a diverse array of foundations, research institutions, nonprofits, and life sciences companies. The Georgia Global Health Alliance (GGHA), a consortium of Georgia’s global health sector, recognizes the importance of collaboration to improve the health of communities at home and abroad. Global health is a critical component of U.S. development and diplomatic engagement, and must be sustained.
The GGHA exists to connect global health organizations and give them a collective voice. This voice is a vehicle for educating lawmakers about how global health affects Americans at home. GGHA will work with national partners to show sector support for a sustained U.S. commitment to global health and development.