Country for PR: United Kingdom
Contributor: PR Newswire Europe
Friday, August 12 2022 - 02:16
Catalytic Investment to Improve Community Health Care for Millions Across Africa
GENEVA, Aug. 11, 2022 /PRNewswire-AsiaNet/ --

The Global Fund collaborates with the Johnson & Johnson Foundation and the 
Skoll Foundation to Launch the Africa Frontline First Catalytic Fund

Private sector investments to the Global Fund's Africa Frontline First 
Catalytic Fund from the Johnson & Johnson Foundation and the Skoll Foundation 
totaling US$ 25 million.
The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria intends to further match this 
commitment by at least with 1:1.
Designed in partnership with the Africa Frontline First Initiative, the Africa 
Frontline First Catalytic Fund (AFF-CF) will accelerate scale up of community 
health services in up to 10 African countries.
The Catalytic Fund seeks to mobilize at least $100 million to improve community 
health systems that are providing essential medical care for up to 130 million 
Investing in frontline community health workers can generate a return of up to 
10:1 when considering the improved economic, health, and social outcomes of 
community health workers.

Today the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria is announcing a crucial new 
catalytic fund to support community health workers across up to 10 African 
countries. The Africa Frontline First Catalytic Fund (AFF-CF) will provide 
financing to accelerate and sustain the scale up of frontline community health 
workers, the backbone of community health services.

The Global Fund warmly welcomes the first investments to the Africa Frontline 
First Catalytic Fund from the Johnson & Johnson Foundation and the Skoll 
Foundation totaling US $25 million. The Global Fund intends to match these and 
other investments to bolster support to and domestic financing for community 
health workers.

These pledges come ahead of the Global Fund's Seventh Replenishment, which aims 
to raise US $18 billion to fund its next three-year cycle of grants. The Global 
Fund estimates that the funding of US $18 billion would save 20 million lives, 
while strengthening health and community systems to reinforce pandemic 

"For the first time in 20 years, many countries have seen HIV, TB and malaria 
cases worsen and community health workers are at the forefront of fighting 
these diseases. This is a unique moment for leaders to join forces and invest 
in the people and structures that will fight pandemics, infectious diseases, 
and other health threats, now and in the future" said Peter Sands, Executive 
Director of The Global Fund.

A professionalized workforce of community health workers, who work hand in hand 
with communities, is key to responding to future outbreaks and making gains on 
longstanding priorities. The Global Fund applauds these initial pledges from 
the Johnson & Johnson Foundation and the Skoll Foundation, but much more 
financial investment is needed to unlock the full potential and to ensure 
people access to professionalized, trained, compensated, and integrated 
community health workers.

The Africa Frontline First Catalytic Fund will help ensure that up to 10 
African countries accelerate progress and improve health care delivered at the 
community level, as well as crucially ensure the women, who make up the large 
proportion of community health workers, are properly paid for their work. The 
Catalytic Fund will combine coordinated technical assistance and implementation 
funding, as well as investments to scale financing, employ digital tools, 
increase the availability of essential life-saving commodities, and better 
integrate community health workers within the overall health system.

"Health workers are the cornerstone of care. By training, empowering, and 
integrating community health workers into existing health systems it's possible 
to extend care and reduce the burden of disease for millions of people." said 
Joaquin Duato, CEO of Johnson & Johnson. "The Johnson & Johnson Foundation 
committed $15 million to the Africa Frontline First Catalytic Fund to ensure 
delivery of effective, efficient, and equitable care at the frontlines."

The Global Fund Catalytic Fund approach has already shown the power of 
leveraging philanthropic funding. For example, support from the Children's 
Investment Fund Foundation for HIV self-testing has increased funding fivefold 
in two years and increased HIV self-test procurement from thousands to millions 
in the five countries where it works.

"On the frontlines of pandemic response and prevention, community health 
workers are critical to bringing essential healthcare to the last mile," said 
Don Gips, CEO of the Skoll Foundation. "The Africa Frontline First Catalytic 
Fund brings the power of social innovators like the Financing Alliance for 
Health and Last Mile Health together with the strength of the Global Fund to 
ensure that community health workers are paid, trained, and equipped to 
maintain essential services and lead responses to COVID-19, Ebola, and other 

This catalytic investment is a first step towards a broader shared ambition to 
scale community health, contributing to expanding universal health coverage. As 
part of this effort,

Africa Frontline First is collaborating with the COVID-19 Commission, which 
supports H.E. President Ramaphosa in his role as the African Union Champion on 
COVID-19. In line with the African Union's New Public Health Order, this 
collaboration pursues the AU's broader target of deploying 2 million community 
health workers by 2030.

More than 85% of community health workers in Africa, the majority of whom are 
women, are not paid for their work.  Experience shows that professional 
community health workers - who are paid, trained, and supervised - are best 
equipped to provide essential health services in their communities, even amid 
great challenges.

"In Liberia and around the world, we have seen the power of community health 
workers to deliver essential care in rural and remote communities - and to 
maintain that care during crises like the Ebola epidemic and the COVID-19 
pandemic," said Her Excellency Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Nobel Peace Prize 
recipient and former President of Liberia. "The Africa Frontline First 
Catalytic Fund is a unique opportunity to invest in those health workers and 
catalyze real change, creating a healthier and safer world for all."

The Global Fund is a worldwide movement to defeat HIV, TB and malaria and 
ensure a healthier, safer, more equitable future for all. We raise and invest 
more than US$4 billion a year to fight the deadliest infectious diseases, 
challenge the injustice which fuels them and strengthen health systems in more 
than 100 of the hardest hit countries. Since the beginning of the COVID-19 
pandemic, we have invested an additional US$4.3 billion to fight the new 
pandemic and reinforce systems for health. We unite world leaders, communities, 
civil society, health workers and the private sector to find solutions that 
have the most impact, and we take them to scale worldwide. Since 2002, the 
Global Fund has saved 44 million lives.

Africa Frontline First is a collaborative effort by the Financing Alliance for 
Health, Last Mile Health, the Community Health Acceleration Partnership, and 
Community Health Impact Coalition under the championship of President Ellen 
Johnson Sirleaf.

Information on the work of the Global Fund is available at
Information on Africa Frontline First is available at

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SOURCE: The Global Fund