New vaccines lead to optimism for global health

Budget Cuts Would Set Back Progress In Health, Bill Gates Says

Bill Gates Says His Foundation Can't Balance Trump's Cuts to the US Foreign Aid Budget

Bill Gates, co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, speaks during a discussion on innovation hosted by Reuters in Washington, U.S., April 18, 2016. Cuts would affect funding of global institutions like the United Nations and World Bank, but more significantly would drastically decrease overseas development assistance.

According to new research published by the Gates Foundation and the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation, proposed budget cuts have the potential to jeopardize global progress in combating global poverty and disease.

The report likewise looked at poverty rates, maternal and infant deaths, access to contraception and sanitation, and other issues prevalent in health and development. Forecasting good and bad future scenarios, it found millions of lives hanging in the balance.

Gates said that while there has been remarkable progress in recent decades, this current season of instability, shifting priorities and looming budget cuts could hamper all headway, compromising the major works that have been done.

HIV, which now infects nearly 37 million people worldwide, is an "iconic example", Gates said, "because the world really did step up with an incredible level of generosity which has meant (annual) AIDS-related deaths have fallen by nearly a half since the peak in 2005". But advances in medicine and technology have allowed for the problem to be addressed, "because the world really did step up with an incredible level of generosity which has meant (annual) AIDS-related deaths have fallen by nearly a half since the peak in 2005".

The Gates IHME analysis, called the Goalkeepers report, forecast that a 10 percent cut in global donor funding for HIV treatment could mean more than 5 million extra deaths by 2030.

Back in April, Trump announced his 2018 budget proposal, which included a 31% cut to the global affairs budget. However, opposition Democrats and even fellow Republicans have vocally opposed the move. Trump's budget for global health programs included a 24% cut to efforts to combat HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria.

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