Must Read: Michael Gerson responds to negative Global Fund coverage

Before departing for the weekend, we’re going to bump this blog post to the top of the feed. If you haven’t yet, please read it:

We’re big supporters of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB, and Malaria here at ONE, with so many of our members helping raise awareness about the great work it’s doing to save lives. Despite fantastic results — providing AIDS treatment for 3 million people, anti-TB treatment for 7.7 million people, and 160 million insecticide-treated bed nets for prevention of malaria – the Global Fund is under attack.

Columnist Mike Gerson has just written an excellent column on this issue that’s published in today’s Washington Post. We encourage you to read it, and share it widely!

We at ONE have been working hard to respond to this wave of negative coverage of the Fund, which is based almost entirely on one initial press report that took incidents in a few countries where funding was misappropriated – incidents caught and identified by the Fund itself! – and twisted them to imply that fraud was widespread. We blogged here on this, joining other allies in trying to get out the facts. It’s been tough, with so many being all too willing to believe the worst.

We’re also pleased to hear that the Global Fund announced today that it is taking some extra measures to increase its vigilance, including an external review of all of its financial safety systems. Those already in place are robust, but this might help assuage the donors. The Global Fund needs to deal with this problem to be sure, but its most important work is to speed resources to countries fighting three raging epidemics and the sooner it can get back to that the better.