CDDEP and the Affordable Medicines Facility-Malaria (AMFm)
AMFm operationalizes the key recommendation from a 2004 report of the U.S. Institute of Medicine for a high-level, global subsidy of antimalarial drug combinations. Center for Disease Dynamics, Economics and Policy (CDDEP) Director Ramanan Laxminarayan was a member of the committee responsible for the report, Laxminarayan and CDDEP researcher David Smith coauthored a Health Affairs paper examining the effectiveness of the subsidy, and Hellen Gelband, CDDEP Program Fellow, then at IOM, directed the study . CDDEP researchers continue to advise the developers of AMFm, which is now a separate business line of the Global Funds for AIDS, TB and Malaria (the Global Fund). A final vote of the Global Fund Board was taken on 9 November (a few days after the Nairobi symposium), approving the first 10 countries to participate in AMFm (phase 1). The aim of AMFm is to make high quality antimalarials available at affordable prices through both public and private sector outlets, without creation of new distribution systems. CDDEP organized symposia on AMFm at the recent Multilateral Initiative on Malaria (MIM) in Nairobi and at this week’s American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene.
The American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene (ASTMH)
November 22, 2009
A symposium is scheduled for November 22 at the ASTMH Annual Meeting in Washington, DC. Gelband and Adeyi will provide background on the subsidy (including an update since the Global Fund Board vote), but the remainder of the symposium is devoted to learning about a large pilot study carried out by the Clinton Foundation in Tanzania and the status of ACT (artemisinin-combination drugs, the mainstay of effective malaria treatment) use in a number of malaria-endemic countries.Oliver Sabot, principal investigator of the Tanzania study, will present the results of the Tanzania study, which demonstrated the feasibility of the AMFm approach. Kathryn O’Connell, from ACTwatch, will discuss current access to ACTs in public and private sector outlets in endemic countries, and the high prices that have inhibited their use.
The Multilateral Initiative on Malaria (MIM)
November 4, 2009
On November 4, 2009, about 100 people gathered in the amphitheatre of the Kenyatta International Conference Center to find out more about AMFm’s status and about the plans being put in place by countries expecting to participate in phase 1. Hellen Gelband filled in the path from the IOM report—Saving Lives, Buying Time—through the early development of the concept of a global subsidy, eventually dubbed AMFm. Dr. Olusoji Adeyi, seconded from the World Bank to set up and run AMFm at the Global Fund and involved in the process since 2004, explained how AMFm will work and detailed the processes that have been established to operate the program and monitor results. Representatives of malaria control programs in Ghana, Nigeria and Tanzania—all phase 1 countries whose proposals were approved days after the symposium—described the steps they were taking to prepare both public and private sectors for the flow of AMFm-subsidized drugs. The final speaker was Dr. Graciela Diap of the Drugs for Neglected Diseases initiative (DNDi), a non-profit public-private drug development organization, who talked about the complementary and convergent goals of AMFm and DNDi.
Fighting Malaria with AMFm: No More "Business as Usual"
April 24, 2009
How do you get effective drugs against malaria to people in the most rural spots in Africa and Asia - and also make it quick (children can die in a matter of hours) and inexpensive? And at the same time, how do we protect artemisinin derivatives – the world’s best malaria drugs for at least the next decade – from succumbing to drug-resistant malaria, as other effective drugs have in the past? In a world poised to control and then eliminate malaria altogether, the answer to those questions is definitely not "business as usual." Read more about this event.
See how AMFm came to be: Translating an Idea into a Policy: “Saving Lives and Buying Time” for Antimalarial Medicines - Harvard teaching case