Created in 2001 by an initial group of 17 visionary companies under founding President and CEO Richard C. Holbrooke, GBCHealth began its history as the “Global Business Coalition on HIV/AIDS” and later the “Global Business Coalition on HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria,” In June 2011 we became GBCHealth in recognition of the expanding array of health areas in which business could to play a critical role.
GBCHealth has worked with hundreds of companies—individually and in partnership with one other—to tackle the challenges of HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria, diabetes and other health issues facing the workplace and communities where business is conducted.
GBCHealth’s focus today is consistent with the rapidly changing landscape for private sector involvement in global health. When Ambassador Richard Holbrooke helped found GBCHealth, HIV/AIDS soared at crisis levels and few companies had programs to protect their employees and communities. Today, thanks in part to our work, corporate health programs of all types are increasingly mainstreamed with dedicated staff and firms to deliver them. We’ve seen remarkable progress in the private sector’s role in increasing access to medicines and preventing HIV, TB, malaria and other conditions. We are proud to have helped usher in these improvements.
Our urgent focus today on meeting the MDG targets by their 2015 deadline is in some ways a reprise of the urgency felt in GBCHealth’s earliest days.
Over our history GBCHealth has worked in collaboration with companies to shape and bring forward the voice of business on issues of key importance to global health. Powerful examples include:
- Development of a CEO pledge to end workplace HIV stigma and discrimination that was signed by more than 100 CEOs
- Leading the business community in support of the successful repeal of the US HIV travel ban, and then the progressive dismantling of travel restrictions in other countries
- Supporting signature government initiatives and focus areas, including PEPFAR and the US State Department’s Office of Global Women’s Issues
Most recently we have partnered with the U.N. Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Financing the Health Millennium Development Goals and for Malaria (UNSEO) and its sister organization the MDG Health Alliance. These partnerships increase our ability to ensure that private sector players direct their efforts effectively to the most critical health areas where progress lags and we are not on track to meet targets by their 2015 deadline.