The Fund for Global Health has three main program areas: global health advocacy, innovation in rural health care, and road safety.
The mission of the Fund for Global Health is to provide the maximum possible health benefit to vulnerable people in developing countries. One of the best ways to accomplish this is by advocating for increased U.S. funding for effective global health programs. This year we are focused on increasing U.S. foreign aid for addressing maternal & child health, immunization and tuberculosis.
Maternal and Child Health. Birth attendants trained with U.S. aid are saving the lives of mothers and infants who could otherwise perish in a risky childbirth. This is one initiative of the U.S. Agency for International Development’s Maternal and Child Health (MCH) program, which has saved the lives of 4.6 million children and 200,000 women since 2008. However, every day over 16,000 children still die of things like pneumonia, diarrhea and malaria, all of which have low-cost solutions.
GAVI, the Vaccine Alliance. By preventing illness, immunization improves a child's cognitive skills, physical strength and performance at school. Vaccination currently saves between 2 and 3 million lives every year. But 1.5 million children still die each year of vaccine- preventable diseases, and the U.S. must keep its pledge of financial support to GAVI, the Vaccine Alliance.
Tuberculosis. Tuberculosis is now the biggest infectious disease killer worldwide, taking 1.8 million lives a year, yet funding has decreased over the past few years. With multi-drug resistant tuberculosis emerging as a threat to global health security, it’s very important to step up funding for TB programs.
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Providing rural communities with access to quality health care is a key priority for the Fund for Global Health. Rural communities in developing countries often face severe health problems. Functioning clinics are frequently far away, quality of care may be low, and the cost of transport can be a major barrier. As a result many people in rural communities hesitate to seek medical care for themselves or their family members until their condition becomes extreme – when it is often too late. Lack of access to health care in rural areas contributes to high mortality rates among children, who often die from from treatable illnesses such as dehydration, pneumonia and malaria. We want to change this by developing innovative strategies for health care delivery to rural communities.
Mobile Health Workers. One innovation being developed by FFGH is our training and deployment of financially self-sustaining health outreach workers who use motorcycles to travel the countryside. These highly mobile health care workers cover a large catchment area, and provide access to care for thousands people who would generally not be reached by traditional, fixed-location clinics.
Our health outreach workers are trained to provide high quality diagnostic services, prevention, and treatment, including oral hydration, antibiotics, artemisinin-based combination therapy (ACT) for malaria, deworming and Vitamin A. We have developed a cost-recovery model; small fees are charged for some services, while other life-saving services are provided free of charge. Initial data indicates the method can be financially self-sustaining.
Road traffic injuries are one of the most important – and most neglected – public health challenges of our time. Road traffic injuries kill some 1.3 million people each year, and injure as many as 50 million more. Ninety percent of the deaths are in the developing world.
Most of the victims are low-income people, including pedestrians, people on bicycles, and children crossing roads to get to school.
Road crashes are expected to surpass HIV-AIDS as a cause of death as motorization rates ramp up in the developing world and as faster roads are built.
FFGH believes that road traffic injuries require much more attention from policy makers and the global public health community. We advocate for specific actions to effectively address road traffic injuries and deaths. And we work closely with other organizations, building alliances to bring about change. For more information on the 3-Star Coalition for safer road construction, click here.