Financing the Response to HIV in Low-Income and Middle-Income Countries

AIDS Financing and Economics Division, Joint United Nations Program on AIDS (UNAIDS), Geneva, Switzerland.
JAIDS Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes (Impact Factor: 4.56). 12/2009; 52 Suppl 2(Suppl 2):S119-26. DOI: 10.1097/QAI.0b013e3181baeeda
Source: PubMed


To describe levels of national HIV spending and examine programmatic allocations according to the type of epidemic and country income.
Cross-sectional analysis of HIV expenditures from 50 low-income and middle-income countries. Sources of information included country reports of domestic spending by programmatic activity and HIV services. These HIV spending categories were cross tabulated by source of financing, stratified by type of HIV epidemic and income level of the country and reported in international dollars (I$).
Fifty low-income and middle-income countries spent US $ 2.6 billion (I$ 5.8 billion) on HIV in 2006; 87% of the funding among the 17 low-income countries came from international donors. Average per capita spending was I$ 2.1 and positively correlated with Gross National Income. Per capita spending was I$ 1.5 in 9 countries with low-level HIV epidemics, I$ 1.6 in 27 countries with concentrated HIV epidemics and I$ 9.5 in 14 countries with generalized HIV epidemics. On average, spending on care and treatment represented 50% of AIDS spending across all countries. The treatment-to-prevention spending ratio was 1.5:1, 3:1, and 2:1 in countries with low-level, concentrated and generalized epidemics, respectively. Spending on prevention represented 21% of total AIDS spending. However, expenditures addressing most-at-risk populations represented less than 1% in countries with generalized epidemics and 7% in those with low-level or concentrated epidemics.
The most striking finding is the mismatch between the types of HIV epidemics and the allocation of resources. The current global economic recession will force countries to rethink national strategies, especially in low-income countries with high aid dependency. Mapping HIV expenditures provides crucial guidance for reallocation of resources and supports evidence-based decisions. Now more than ever, countries need to know and act on their epidemics and give priority to the most effective programmatic services.

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    • "In previous economic literature, there have been a number of exercises aimed at estimating future funding needs for scaling up HIV programs in low and middle income countries based on extrapolation of current expenditures and epidemiologic modeling [13], [14]. On the other hand, there have been macroeconomic estimations of the impact of HIV/AIDS integrating epidemiological dynamics into neoclassical or “endogenous growth” models [15]–[18]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Previous economic literature on the cost-effectiveness of antiretroviral treatment (ART) programs has been mainly focused on the microeconomic consequences of alternative use of resources devoted to the fight against the HIV pandemic. We rather aim at forecasting the consequences of alternative scenarios for the macroeconomic performance of countries. We used a micro-simulation model based on individuals aged 15-49 selected from nationally representative surveys (DHS for Cameroon, Tanzania and Swaziland) to compare alternative scenarios : 1-freezing of ART programs to current levels of access, 2- universal access (scaling up to 100% coverage by 2015, with two variants defining ART eligibility according to previous or current WHO guidelines). We introduced an "artificial" ageing process by programming methods. Individuals could evolve through different health states: HIV negative, HIV positive (with different stages of the syndrome). Scenarios of ART procurement determine this dynamics. The macroeconomic impact is obtained using sample weights that take into account the resulting age-structure of the population in each scenario and modeling of the consequences on total growth of the economy. Increased levels of ART coverage result in decreasing HIV incidence and related mortality. Universal access to ART has a positive impact on workers' productivity; the evaluations performed for Swaziland and Cameroon show that universal access would imply net cost-savings at the scale of the society, when the full macroeconomic consequences are introduced in the calculations. In Tanzania, ART access programs imply a net cost for the economy, but 70% of costs are covered by GDP gains at the 2034 horizon, even in the extended coverage option promoted by WHO guidelines initiating ART at levels of 350 cc/mm(3) CD4 cell counts. Universal Access ART scaling-up strategies, which are more costly in the short term, remain the best economic choice in the long term. Renouncing or significantly delaying the achievement of this goal, due to "legitimate" short term budgetary constraints would be a misguided choice.
    Full-text · Article · Apr 2012 · PLoS ONE
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    • "These countries allocated about 40% of their funding for HIV care and treatment activities. The review of the investment of other key donors in HIV control showed that in 2002-2009, most PEPFAR funds also went to countries with generalized epidemics and mostly for HIV treatment [18], whereas domestic and international funding for prevention remained underfunded [19]. Global investment into HIV treatment and prevention could bring better outcomes if national and international efforts to control HIV epidemics were balanced between the most effective programmatic interventions. "
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    ABSTRACT: Between 2002 and 2010, the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria's investment in HIV increased substantially to reach US$12 billion. We assessed how the Global Fund's investments in HIV programmes were targeted to key populations in relation to disease burden and national income. We conducted an assessment of the funding approved by the Global Fund Board for HIV programmes in Rounds 1-10 (2002-2010) in 145 countries. We used the UNAIDS National AIDS Spending Assessment framework to analyze the Global Fund investments in HIV programmes by HIV spending category and type of epidemic. We examined funding per capita and its likely predictors (HIV adult prevalence, HIV prevalence in most-at-risk populations and gross national income per capita) using stepwise backward regression analysis. About 52% ($6.1 billion) of the cumulative Global Fund HIV funding was targeted to low- and low-middle-income countries. Around 56% of the total ($6.6 billion) was channelled to countries in sub-Saharan Africa. The majority of funds were for HIV treatment (36%; $4.3 billion) and prevention (29%; $3.5 billion), followed by health systems and community systems strengthening and programme management (22%; $2.6 billion), enabling environment (7%; $0.9 billion) and other activities. The Global Fund investment by country was positively correlated with national adult HIV prevalence. About 10% ($0.4 billion) of the cumulative HIV resources for prevention targeted most-at-risk populations. There has been a sustained scale up of the Global Fund's HIV support. Funding has targeted the countries and populations with higher HIV burden and lower income. Prevention in most-at-risk populations is not adequately prioritized in most of the recipient countries. The Global Fund Board has recently modified eligibility and prioritization criteria to better target most-at-risk populations in Round 10 and beyond. More guidance is being provided for Round 11 to strategically focus demand for Global Fund financing in the present resource-constrained environment.
    Full-text · Article · Oct 2011 · Journal of the International AIDS Society
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    • "While we used reasonable methods for doing so, only the collection of country-specific data will enable us to refine this analysis of ART's economic impact to the point where precise estimates for individual countries can be generated. Recently established routine tracking of national program expenditures will in the future generate useful data on country variations and time trends in per-patient and program-level costs of ART and other services [61], including effects of ARV drug price declines, changing WHO treatment regimen recommendations [28], and the proportion of patients on first- and second-line ARV regimens. Improved estimation of productivity gains realized in different settings will further benefit from ongoing efforts to enhance monitoring of patient adherence, retention and quality-of-life (including employment) outcomes, especially over the longer term as patients accumulate years on ART. "
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    ABSTRACT: Since the early 2000s, aid organizations and developing country governments have invested heavily in AIDS treatment. By 2010, more than five million people began receiving antiretroviral therapy (ART)--yet each year, 2.7 million people are becoming newly infected and another two million are dying without ever having received treatment. As the need for treatment grows without commensurate increase in the amount of available resources, it is critical to assess the health and economic gains being realized from increasingly large investments in ART. This study estimates total program costs and compares them with selected economic benefits of ART, for the current cohort of patients whose treatment is cofinanced by the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. At end 2011, 3.5 million patients in low and middle income countries will be receiving ART through treatment programs cofinanced by the Global Fund. Using 2009 ART prices and program costs, we estimate that the discounted resource needs required for maintaining this cohort are $14.2 billion for the period 2011-2020. This investment is expected to save 18.5 million life-years and return $12 to $34 billion through increased labor productivity, averted orphan care, and deferred medical treatment for opportunistic infections and end-of-life care. Under alternative assumptions regarding the labor productivity effects of HIV infection, AIDS disease, and ART, the monetary benefits range from 81 percent to 287 percent of program costs over the same period. These results suggest that, in addition to the large health gains generated, the economic benefits of treatment will substantially offset, and likely exceed, program costs within 10 years of investment.
    Full-text · Article · Oct 2011 · PLoS ONE
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