Ms. Katyal is spot on in her piece “America should act now to end global disease,” printed April 1. I, too, am worried about the possibility of the United States and other nations reducing their foreign aid support to global health programs this year in favor of looking inward only to their own needs.
It’s the coordinated efforts of international partnerships like Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, that make it possible to distribute vaccines worldwide at affordable prices. Reducing support at this point would hobble one of our most effective mechanisms to fight COVID-19 and more transmittable diseases.
To distribute future COVID-19 vaccines and avoid the resurgence of other child-killing diseases, we should remain a strong leader and provide $290 million to Gavi. We should also fully fund the CDC with $50 million for measles elimination activities and $176 million for polio eradication programs.
I urge Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler and our senators, Roy Blunt and Josh Hawley, to do all in their power to strengthen our global health activities.
Cynthia Changyit Levin is a U.N. Foundation volunteer for the Shot@Life Campaign and lives in Town and Country.