GHWA welcomes important health worker provisions in United States renewal of its global AIDS programme (PEPFAR II)
Geneva, Friday 1 August 2008 —The Global Health Workforce Alliance welcomes the important provisions on training and retaining health workers included in the United States’ “Tom Lantos and Henry J. Hyde Global Leadership on HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria Reauthorization Act of 2008” – known also as PEPFAR II – which was signed into law by President Bush on Wednesday 30 July.
The new legislation promises increased action to address the critical shortage of health care workers around the world. The Alliance applauds the commitment in the legislation to the target of training and retaining at least 140,000 health care professionals and paraprofessionals. This demonstrates the U.S. government’s recognition that addressing the health workforce crisis is one of the fundamental elements to enabling increased progress on AIDS, TB and Malaria.
With these commitments the U.S. government has taken another major step in keeping its commitment to the global AIDS response, and at the same time contributing to the strengthening of health systems. The Alliance underlines the importance of supporting and helping develop and implement strong national health workforce strategies that address all levels and aspects of the workforce as a key component to health system strengthening. The emphasis within this legislation on addressing the health workforce crisis is an important step towards the implementation of commitments on human resources for health made in early July 2008 by the G8 through the communiqué on health.
The Alliance expresses its wish to work closely with the United States government in collaboration with its partners including the World Health organization in helping to develop a solid strategy on implementing health workforce-related areas of the legislation, guided by the strategies for action laid out in the Kampala Agenda for Action on the health workforce crisis.
We underline our commitment to continue supporting all countries in their responses to the crisis to achieve the goal of access for all to skilled and motivated health workers as part of a functioning health system.