Zimbabwe is assured of an adequate supply of anti-retroviral drugs (ARVs) following the allocation of US$500 million for the next three years by the Global Fund to Fight Aids, Tuberculosis and Malaria.
This follows a replenishment conference in France in October attended by President Mnangagwa, where he paid part of the country’s obligations to the fund.
The fund announced on Wednesday that Zimbabwe will get US$425 million to deepen the fight against HIV and Aids, while US$24 million will be channelled towards the battle against tuberculosis through the provision of medication.
The fight against malaria will get US$51 million. Provision of the funds, which covers the period from next year to 2022, seeks to eliminate the epidemics by 2030.
In a statement on Wednesday, Global Fund executive director Mr Peter Sands said: “World leaders came together at our replenishment and made commitments to step up the fight to end these epidemics by 2030.
“Now the real work begins. Our allocations will allow partners to expand programmes that work, and to find innovative solutions for new challenges. In addition to more money, we need better collaboration and more effective programmes.”
Zimbabwe, which was represented at the highest level, pledged US$1 million to the Global Fund pot, which mobilised over US$14 billion from different countries and development partners.
According to the Global Fund, most eligible countries had their allocations increased, and every region will be getting more funding overall.
African countries are receiving a combined US$2 billion from the Global Fund, with West and Central African countries getting the biggest increase of US$780 million.
Worldwide, there are 32 countries with an allocation increase of 40 percent or higher.
Zimbabwe’s US$500 million allocation is not significantly higher from the previous allocation of US$484 million which covered 2017 to 2019.
The Global Fund’s 2020 to 2022 allocation methodology is geared towards increasing the overall impact of programmes to prevent, treat and care for people affected by HIV, TB and malaria, and to build resilient and sustainable systems for health.
The allocations provide significantly more resources for the highest burden and lowest income countries. The methodology also looks at absorption capacity of allocated funds.
Although Zimbabwe has, over the years mobilised resources locally through the Aids Levy, the Global Fund remains the major funder of HIV, TB and malaria programmes.
On HIV, the global fund is supporting treatment of about 710 000 people on ARVs and prevention of new HIV infections, particularly among adolescents and young women where HIV infection is still high.
Through support, mainly from the Global Fund, Zimbabwe has scaled up interventions to respond to treatment and prevention for TB and malaria, resulting in the increase in TB treatment success, as well as malaria elimination in most endemic districts.
The country continues to invest in strengthening health systems through retention of healthcare workers and building community health systems through support from the Global Fund.