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About the Systemwide Effects of the Fund (SWEF) Research Network Initiative
SWEF participants

The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria (GFATM) aims to attract, manage, and disburse resources that will make a significant and sustainable impact on the three focal diseases. The GFATM has also stated its commitment to support programs that address the three diseases "in ways that contribute to the strengthening of health systems." The Global Fund is likely to have a variety of direct and indirect effects upon health care systems that could be positive or negative in nature. To be effective and sustainable in the long run, interventions will depend upon well-functioning health systems. This is true not only for the Global Fund, but also for other initiatives (MAP, President's Initiative, etc) that aim to substantially increase the scale of response to specific diseases, particularly HIV/AIDS.

The Systemwide Effects of the Fund (SWEF) Research Network is a collaborative research network, composed of research organizations in the South and in the North, that seeks to understand how monies being disbursed by the Global Fund as well as other significant sources of funding for HIV/AIDS, TB, and Malaria (such as MAP and the Presidential Initiative) affect the broader health care systems of recipient countries.

The SWEF network is committed to addressing these difficult policy questions in a timely, empirical, and objective manner, that is sensitive to the complex policy environment within which initiatives such as the Global Fund are operating. The SWEF network strives to engage key stakeholders, at the national and global level, in conceptualizing the research, interpreting study findings, and considering implications for policy.

The overall objective of the research is:

    To document the effects of the processes involved in applying for and receiving a Global Fund grant, and in implementing Global Fund-supported activities, on the health care systems of recipient countries.

The results will be used to derive lessons for:

  • Stakeholders in countries receiving GFATM grants, to inform policies and implementation strategies for GFATM-supported activities
  • The Global Fund Board and Secretariat, to help improve GFATM processes and guidelines in order to ensure that Global Fund-supported activities enhance broader health care systems
  • The broader donor and global community regarding how best to channel efforts to scale up substantially the assault upon AIDS, TB, and malaria and other diseases of poverty in low- and middle-income countries

For more information, please e-mail PHRplus Research Coordinator Kate Stillman at

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