July 2019 Newsletter of the CSIS Global Health Policy Center
JULY 2019

Global Health Policy Center Monthly Update

J. Stephen Morrison

Dear colleague,

Welcome to the July 2019 newsletter from the Global Health Policy Center (GHPC) at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS)! We invite you to catch up on our latest content.


Recent Events:

June 4: HIV/AIDS in the United States: The Road to 2030
On June 4, Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases at the National Institutes of Health, and Dr. Robert R. Redfield, Director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, joined us in a public session to discuss “Ending the HIV Epidemic: A Plan for the United States,” which President Trump announced in his February 5 State of the Union address. Following opening remarks by Sara M. Allinder, GHPC Executive Director and Senior Fellow, I moderated a conversation with Dr. Fauci and Dr. Redfield on how this initiative originated and what lies ahead in implementing the 10-year plan to end the HIV epidemic in the United States by 2030. They spoke to expectations around financing and coordination, ensuring bipartisan support in Congress, and continued budgetary uncertainty. Stigma remains the most critical barrier. Both were adamant that community engagement is essential to ensuring that the proven prevention and treatment methods reach priority populations. They anticipate considerable interest at the AIDS 2020 conference, to be held July 6-10, 2020 in San Francisco and Oakland. We also provided a sneak peek of our forthcoming HIV documentary, which will be released in early 2020.
Watch here

Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, Dr. Robert R. Redfield, and J. Stephen Morrison. Photo courtesy of CSIS.


June 26: Demographic Trends and Youth Empowerment in Africa: Opportunities for U.S. Engagement
This piece by GHPC Senior Associate Janet Fleischman is the latest policy briefing from the CSIS Women’s Health Policy Forum, which aims to ensure continued bipartisan support for U.S. investments in women's health and global development and to generate consensus around U.S. policy options. This new paper argues that many of the fastest growing populations are in the world’s poorest countries, putting them at a critical threshold. Growth may spur economic growth and innovation if there is sufficient investment in burgeoning youth populations. Conversely, population growth coupled with a shortage of opportunities for young people could undermine advances in health, development, and ultimately security. Given the enormous implications of these demographic shifts, U.S. assistance should focus strategically on promoting young people’s health and development, with an emphasis on empowering young women.
Read here.
The previous paper from the Women’s Health Policy Forum was Women’s Economic Empowerment and Women’s Health Services: An Opportunity for U.S. Leadership.
June 27: The U.S. Department of Defense’s Role in Health Security: Current Capabilities and Recommendations for the Future
Protecting the homeland against biological threats begins with preventing those threats from reaching our shores. The Department of Defense (DOD) contributes to overall U.S. health security through programs specifically aimed at countering biological threats from all sources: both through public health activities coordinated with civilian counterparts at home and abroad, and through research and development of medical countermeasures aimed at protecting U.S. Forces against health risks throughout the world. Civilian and military scientists, public health experts, and disaster planners are somewhat familiar with DOD’s health security capabilities, yet most lack a clear understanding of the breadth, depth, and limitations of DOD’s capacities.
The CSIS Commission on Strengthening America’s Health Security has disseminated a new report by GHPC Adjunct Fellow RADM Thomas R. Cullison and I that analyzes the solid and consistent U.S. policy framework that identifies health as a national security issue. That said, we argue that now is the time to more fully integrate DOD’s unique expertise and capabilities in a more cohesive and efficient manner. We provide a broad overview of DOD health security activities and offer select concrete recommendations for strengthening the coherence and integration of DOD activities, with a special emphasis on leadership, novel diseases and new dangerous forms of resistance, surveillance, building host country capacities, and expanded exercises.
Read here.
June 27: Building Public Health Capacity Through Polio Eradication: Polio Labs
Our Building Global Health Capacity Through Polio Eradication microsite explores the history of polio infrastructure, the role of critical assets in eradication, and potential future uses for those assets that could further benefit global health security. Polio assets – disease surveillance and laboratory networks, community-based disease monitoring and prevention, accountability mechanisms, and global partnerships – bring benefits beyond polio eradication by addressing other diseases. In zooming in on each of these assets, the site provides a comprehensive picture of how thoughtful repurposing of these beneficial tools post-eradication can boost the world’s ability to stop diseases at their source to help protect people everywhere.
A new interactive page by Nellie Bristol, GHPC Senior Fellow, and Michaela Simoneau, GHPC Program Coordinator and Research Assistant, on the Global Polio Laboratory Network maps the lab network and explores the path of a poliovirus sample as it moves from detection through genome sequencing. This fifth installment in our series on U.S. support for global polio eradication discusses the role of the Global Polio Laboratory Network in providing the underlying evidence base for disease detection and identification, and as a model for other networks.
Explore here.

New Take as Directed Podcast Episodes:

Tune in to our latest Take as Directed episodes and subscribe via your favorite podcast service to get notices of our releases every other Tuesday, as well as special bonus episodes throughout the season.
June 11: Politics, Health, and Humanitarianism: The Role of UNRWA
In this episode of Take as Directed, Sara is joined by special guest host Haim Malka, Deputy Director and Senior Fellow of the CSIS Middle East Program, to discuss the future of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA). The two interview Dr. Akihiro Seita, Director of Health and WHO Special Representative for UNRWA, and Elizabeth Campbell, Director of UNRWA’s Washington D.C. office, about their concerns for Palestinian refugees’ health following the abrupt, unforeseen termination of U.S. support in 2018.  
Listen here.

Sara M. Allinder, Dr. Akihiro Seita, Haim Malka, and Elizabeth Campbell recording this episode of Take as Directed. Photo courtesy of CSIS.

June 25: Geeta Rao Gupta on Gender Equality and Health
In this episode of Take as Directed, Janet sits down with Geeta Rao Gupta, Executive Director of the 3D Program for Girls and Women, former President of the International Center for Research on Women (ICRW), and former Deputy Executive Director of UNICEF. They discuss the new series of The Lancet, of which Geeta was a principal author, that outlines the impact of gender norms and inequalities on health, describes persistent barriers to progress, and provides an agenda for action. They also discuss the recent Women Deliver conference in Vancouver and how to maintain optimism for the future.
Listen here.
June 27: Innovation and Optimism: A Conversation with Dr. Trevor Mundel
In this episode of Take as Directed, I speak with Dr. Trevor Mundel, President of the Global Health Division at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. We discuss the arc of Dr. Mundel’s personal career and his remarkable tenure at the Gates Foundation, including the creation of the Medical Research Institute; the launch of CHAMPS, the Child Health and Mortality Prevention Service; and the evolution of CEPI, the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations. We close with consideration of what keeps him awake at night and what gives him the greatest hope looking into the future.
Listen here.

J. Stephen Morrison and Dr. Trevor Mundel recording this episode of Take as Directed. Photo courtesy of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Upcoming episodes include:

In a two-part series on the burgeoning Ebola crisis in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, David Gressly, the UN Emergency Ebola Response Coordinator, appointed in late May by UN Secretary General Guterres, and Jason Stearns, Senior Fellow and Director of the Congo Research Group at the NYU Center on International Cooperation. Each addresses the targeted violence against health providers, the active community resistance, the opacity surrounding the violence, and what measures are needed to truly understand what is unfolding. Gressly goes into considerable detail on the key leadership role he occupies, and the accelerating drive to assemble a strategic plan, combined with an updated sketch of true costs.

The podcast series is available on our website, Spotify, Stitcher, and on iTunes. Please subscribe using the podcast app. 

New AIDS 2020 Podcast Episodes:

People living with HIV. Public health experts. Activists, politicians, and pop culture icons. The largest conference on HIV/AIDS is returning to the Bay Area – to San Francisco and Oakland – in July 2020. AIDS 2020 is a podcast that follows the stories of key players connected to the conference as the epidemic approaches a critical inflection point. This series is hosted by H. Andrew Schwartz, CSIS Chief Communications Officer, Sara, and I. Find us wherever you get your podcasts.
Listen to the promo here.
June 12: Anthony Fauci: At the Forefront of the Fight against HIV/AIDS
Dr. Anthony S. Fauci has had a distinguished career in public service, serving as Director of the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases at the National Institutes of Health under six successive presidents. Working at the forefront of the fight against HIV/AIDS over the past 40 years, he has gained an unparalleled perspective on the breathtaking progress that has been made in treatment and prevention. Dr. Fauci believes that we have all we need to end this epidemic, if we couple our scientific tools with active community engagement. He joins Andrew and I on this episode of AIDS 2020 to share his thoughts as an architect of the new 10-year plan to end HIV in the United States, and the biggest obstacles and opportunities for its implementation.
Listen here.

J. Stephen Morrison, H. Andrew Schwartz, and Dr. Anthony S. Fauci recording this episode of AIDS2020. Photo courtesy of CSIS.

June 20: Rep. Barbara Lee: Returning the HIV Spotlight to the Bay Area
In this episode, Andrew interviews Congresswoman Barbara Lee. She represents California’s 13th district, which includes the city of Oakland, and is the co-founder and co-chair of the bipartisan Congressional HIV/AIDS Caucus. Rep. Lee tells Andrew how critically important it is that the International AIDS Conference is returning to the Bay Area after 30 years.
Listen here.
If there is something or someone you’d like to hear about on Take as Directed or AIDS 2020, please email your ideas to us at


Stay up to date on all of our work by visiting the Global Health Policy Center program page.

As always, I welcome your questions and comments.


J. Stephen Morrison
Senior Vice President and Director, Global Health Policy Center
Center for Strategic and International Studies

The Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) is a bipartisan, nonprofit organization founded in 1962 and headquartered in Washington, D.C. It seeks to advance global security and prosperity by providing strategic insights and policy solutions to decisionmakers.

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