Global Health Agencies and Funds

Our goal
To promote greater alignment and accountability through our strategic engagement with key global health institutions in order to advance the foundation’s priorities and progress toward the health-related Sustainable Development Goals.
Mohamed Fall, UNICEF Regional Director for Eastern and Southern Africa, visits the new Emergency Operations Center located outside of Maputo, Mozambique on February 21, 2023. The center provides a central location from which the Global Polio Eradication Initiative partners and national authorities from different sectors can work directly and collaboratively, to share real-time information, and implement a joint action plan to fight polio.
Mohamed Fall, retired UNICEF regional director for eastern and southern Africa, alongside Matshidiso Masire, deputy director at the Gates Foundation, visits the Emergency Operations Center located outside of Maputo, Mozambique. ©Gates Archive/Bruno Pedro

At a glance

  • Nearly all foundation teams work with one or more key global health institutions and rely on them to advance their goals and achieve large-scale impact on global health.
  • The Global Health Agencies and Funds (GHAF) team oversees these relationships and ensures alignment among foundation teams on their strategic priorities, objectives, intended outcomes, and accountability measures to advance the foundation’s priorities with these partners.
  • We work to strengthen the foundation’s engagements with the World Health Organization (WHO); UNICEF; the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria; Unitaid; the Lives and Livelihoods Fund (through the Islamic Development Bank); and the Global Financing Facility and our health funds through the World Bank.
  • We also make investments to support improvements in the governance, service delivery models, measurement and evaluation, and technical proficiency of global health institutions so they can achieve greater impact on health outcomes at the regional and country levels.
Our strategy

Our strategy

Many of the foundation’s strategies rely on key global health institutions to achieve large-scale impact. By centralizing the foundation’s relationships with these institutions, the GHAF team ensures greater coherence and collaboration across foundation teams as well as across those global health institutions. This can accelerate progress on the foundation’s priorities and progress toward the health-related Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

For example, one or more of these global health institutions are involved in nearly every phase along the pathway to introducing live-saving health products and practices—from the development of guidelines for clinical practice to public health policy, prequalification of new products, procurement and supply planning, and country-level uptake, implementation, and delivery. By working to promote greater alignment and accountability among the global health institutions, we can help ensure that they have greater impact.

Areas of focus

Areas of focus

We oversee the strategic relationships between foundation teams and several key global health institutions: WHO, UNICEF, the Global Fund, Unitaid, the Lives and Livelihoods Fund (through the Islamic Development Bank), and the Global Financing Facility and our health fund through the World Bank.

We engage with leaders of these institutions, participate in governance through membership on boards and committees and in advisory groups, and make investments to improve the operational effectiveness of the institutions and the impact of their programs.

We work to increase strategic coherence across global health institutions in areas of priority for the foundation, particularly to increase access to new and existing lifesaving products and interventions. For example, we engage with the institutions to strengthen health system enablers—including surveillance, commodity procurement, supply chains, market dynamics, and health financing—to achieve greater impact on multiple health outcomes at the global, regional, and country levels.

Why focus on global health agencies and funds?

Why focus on global health agencies and funds?

Significant resources flow through the diverse, complex ecosystem of global health institutions. For example, the Global Fund invests US$4 billion a year to reduce the incidence of and mortality from HIV, tuberculosis, and malaria and provides technical expertise to countries. UNICEF has a presence in more than 190 countries and is the world’s largest single vaccine buyer, procuring more than 2 billion doses annually for routine immunization and outbreak response on behalf of nearly 100 countries. WHO, governed by 194 member states, provides quality guidelines, technical assistance, and prequalification of health products for low- and middle-income countries.

Misalignment among foundation teams in their strategic relationships with these institutions and among the institutions themselves can limit the dissemination, uptake, and impact of health products and interventions at the global and country levels and inhibit progress toward the health-related SDGs.

By centralizing the foundation’s relationships with these institutions and increasing strategic alignment within the global health ecosystem, we can ensure that our work has greater impact and more lives are saved around the globe.

Strategy leadership

Strategy leadership