The World of Global Health, Explained, Part II

The President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR)


For the second installment of our global health terminology series, we are including the acronyms and abbreviations for some of the major global health non-governmental organizations (NGOs), multilateral, bilateral, and other operating bodies, (Don’t worry, we will define these words below too!)

AU—African Union:  Established in 2001, the AU is a union consisting of 54 African states and is comprised of both political and administrative bodies. The vision of the African Union is that of: “An integrated, prosperous and peaceful Africa, driven by its own citizens and representing a dynamic force in global arena.”

Bilateral Aid—Development assistance given from one government directly to another government or organization. For example, the United States giving funds directly to the Ministry of Health in Zambia.

CDC—The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:  A federal agency that protects the health and safety of people at home and abroad through health promotion; prevention and control of disease, injury, and disability; and preparedness for new health threats.

CSO—Civil society organization a wide of array of organizations such as community groups, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), labor unions, indigenous groups, charitable organizations, faith-based organizations, professional associations, and foundations that advocate for the will of the general public.

Development Assistance – Financial aid given by governments and other agencies to support the economic, environmental, social and political development of developing countries. It is distinguished from humanitarian aid by focusing on alleviating poverty in the long term, rather than a short term response.

EGPAF—The Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation: EGPAF is a nonprofit organization dedicated to preventing pediatric HIV infection and eliminating pediatric AIDS through research, advocacy, and prevention, care, and treatment programs. Founded in 1988, EGPAF works in 15 countries around the world.

FDA—Food and Drug Administration:  The federal agency responsible for ensuring the safety and effectiveness of drugs, biologics, vaccines, and medical devices. The FDA also regulates the manufacture, distribution, and marketing of tobacco products and works to safeguard the nation's blood supply.

The Gates Foundation—The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation:  the Gates Foundation is largest  private foundation in the world, founded by Bill and Melinda Gates. The primary aims of the foundation to enhance health care and reduce extreme poverty, and to expand educational opportunities and access to information technology.

Global Fund—The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria:  The Global Fund is a financing institution that provides funding to countries to support programs that prevent, treat, and care for people with HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria. It was founded in 2002 to dramatically increase resources for the fight against the three pandemics. It spurs partnerships between government, civil society, the private sector and communities living with the diseases.

MOH—Ministry of Health:  A governmental body that has the overall responsibility to development and implement government policies related health care services for its country. The roles and responsibilities of the MOH vary by country.

Multilateral Aid— Aid provided by a group of countries or an institution representing a group of countries, such as the World Bank, to one or more recipient countries. The funds are not directly given from one country to another, but are filtered through a third party.

NGO—Non-governmental organization:  A  group of individuals or organization not affiliated with any government that is formed to provide services or to advocate a public policy. Although some NGOs are for-profit corporations, the vast majority are nonprofit organizations.

PEPFAR—President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief:  The U.S. government global initiative to combat the HIV/AIDS epidemic. The President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) works with governmental and non-governmental partners worldwide to support integrated HIV prevention, treatment, and care programs. PEPFAR places emphasis on improving health outcomes, increasing program sustainability and integration, and strengthening health systems.

UN—United Nations:   An international organization founded in 1945 after the Second World War by 51 countries committed to maintaining international peace and security, developing friendly relations among nations and promoting social progress, better living standards and human rights.

UNICEF—United Nations Children’s Fund:  UNICEF works in 190 countries and territories to save and improve children's lives by providing health care and immunizations, clean water and sanitation, nutrition, education, emergency relief and more.

USAID—The U.S. Agency for International Development:  Established by President John F. Kennedy in 1961, USAID is the principal U.S. agency that extends assistance to countries recovering from disaster, trying to escape poverty, and engaging in democratic reforms.

WHO—The World Health Organization: The agency of the United Nations that provides global leadership on health-related matters. Responsibilities of the World Health Organization (WHO) include shaping the global health research agenda, setting health standards, promoting evidence-based policy options, providing technical support to countries, and monitoring and assessing health trends.

The World Bank—The World Bank Group: Established in 1944 to provide financial and technical assistance to developing countries around the world. It is not a bank in the ordinary sense but a unique partnership to reduce poverty and support development. The World Bank Group comprises five institutions managed by their member countries.

Johanna Harvey is Senior Communications Officer for the Foundation, based in Washington, D.C.