The recent letter “Support the Global Fund” (ADN, June 13) may raise the question, “Why should we spend money ‘over there’ when we have so many needs ‘over here?’ " I believe COVID-19 has supplied the answer to that question.
We are not immune to what happens “over there.” Viruses do not recognize national borders, and travelers continue to visit foreign shores and return here. Therefore, it is to our benefit to see that global communities remain healthy. In addition, the structures in place to deliver vaccines and health care exist there in large part due to the work of the Global Fund. These in turn were available to quickly address the COVID pandemic.
Unfortunately, that meant TB, malaria and HIV-AIDS received less attention and progress in treating these diseases was lost. The Global Fund Replenishment occurring this fall is focused on reversing that. Our government once again prepares to lead, committing $6 billion over the next three years if the remaining partners commit to their part in raising $18 billion.
Sens. Lisa Murkowski and Dan Sullivan each have experience addressing global health issues. I call on them to stress to their senate colleagues and their international connections the importance of this investment. Yes, it’s a big commitment, but just as we make a sacrifice to save for our children’s college education off in the future, we need to make the sacrifice to commit to global health for future health and stability for “over there” as well as “over here.”
— Patricia Kennish
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