Colin Smith of Friends of the Global Fight will be reporting back from the GBCHealth Conference May 15-17 in New York, where hundreds of leaders will discuss what businesses are doing to improve global health—and what they can and should do moving forward.GBCHealth Conference connects top leaders who recognize that prioritizing health is not just the right thing to do for the world, but the smart thing to do for business. In my work with Friends of the Global Fight Against AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, I get to see that idea in action, made real by people in the corporate sector who are walking the talk on better global health. What I also get to see: there’s so much more that businesses could do—as we all could.
The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, which pools the world’s resources to finance health programs, has counted the private sector among its partners from day one. Innovative models like (RED) and Gift From Africa bring leading companies together to harness financial and in-kind support for the Global Fund. A long list of businesses also lend their expertise, assets, and human resources directly. Many of them will be in the room this week.
This year the private sector has the chance—and the responsibility—to step up its game.
Since its launch, the Global Fund has supported health workers in more than 150 countries and helped save millions of lives. In the fall, donors will “replenish” the Global Fund with three-year financial commitments. The private sector is one of four pillars in the replenishment, alongside traditional government donors, emerging economies, and implementing countries. A successful replenishment—and success against AIDS, tuberculsosis and malaria—depends on everyone coming to the table.
Later this week I’ll be eager to hear from business leaders themselves about what they can bring not just to the Global Fund, but to the broader fight for better health worldwide.
I’ll cover the conference from the opening plenary on the Millennium Development Goals until the closing keynote with renowned economist Jeffrey Sachs. And I’ll focus on some important conversations in between, including spotlights on malaria and tuberculosis, a look at digital health & development, and, of course, the role of the Global Fund, among a long list of other topics.
Will you be at the conference? I’d love to hear from you. What questions would you ask the panelists given the chance? Let me know. And if you won’t be in the room, you can still follow along and join the conversation on Twitter using #GBCH13.