The global health initiative and the struggle for threat reduction
Friday seminar by James C. Bartholomew
In 2009 U.S. President Obama proposed the Global Health Initiative (GHI) as a plan signaling the U.S. intention to expand its leadership to address global health issues. The GHI outlined principally the rationale for a funding plan to strongly support the President’s focus on six main areas: HIV; tuberculosis; malaria; reproductive, maternal, newborn and child health; health systems and health workforce; and neglected tropical diseases. In 1997, the U.S. National Academy of Sciences published its recommendations for a path forward to engage scientists from the Former Soviet Union (FSU) who were involved in the biological weapons complex. This report was entitled: Controlling Dangerous Pathogens: A Blueprint for U.S.-Russian Cooperation, A Report to the Cooperative Threat Reduction Program of the U.S. Department of Defense (1997). It was this report that led to development of the U.S. Department of Defense’s Cooperative Threat Reduction Program as a part of a larger U.S. government effort to engage scientists from the FSU. This discussion will trace the development of the U.S. DoD program through the FSU and will explain how the science of the issues evolved the U.S. DoD program into an approach that was a predecessor to the GHI. Particular examples will be taken from the experience of the program in the Republic of Georgia and the region and how the program stands ready to make significant contributions to the public and animal health programs of the region.
James C. Bartholomew, PhD
Senior Science Advisor, U.S. DoD
Cooperative Threat Reduction Program