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Karl Hofmann
Karl Hofmann is the President and CEO of PSI (Population Services
International), a non-profit global health organization based in Washington, D.C. PSI operates in 69 countries worldwide, with programs in family planning and reproductive health, malaria, child survival, HIV, maternal and child health, and non-communicable diseases.

For more than 40 years, PSI has measurably improved the health of people living in resource-poor communities in the developing world. PSI builds local capacity to solve local challenges and makes comprehensive, quality health care, products and services accessible. PSI works at scale where the need is greatest. A hallmark of PSI’s work is providing real value for those who fund the organization.

As PSI looks to the future, the organization will focus on developing new and innovative models for expanding access to health care, products and services to address the ever-changing health burden faced by those living in resource-poor communities around the world.

Prior to joining PSI in 2007, Mr. Hofmann was a career American diplomat for 23 years. He served as U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Togo, Executive Secretary of the Department of State, and Deputy Chief of Mission (senior career diplomat) at the U.S. Embassy in Paris, France.

Mr. Hofmann is a graduate of Georgetown University and the National
Defense University. He is a director of the U.S. Global Leadership Campaign, a member of the American Academy of Diplomacy, a member of the Board of Directors of the One Acre Fund, and a member of the External Board of Advisors of Pennsylvania State University’s School of International Affairs.

Entries by Karl Hofmann

There's a Bright Side, Profits Are Down

(0) Comments | Posted March 10, 2016 | 3:20 PM


The world seems a pretty miserable place right now. Refugee crises; spread of the Zika virus; violent extremism; failing and struggling states - it feels like our troubles are outrunning our ability to manage them.

But as my organization...

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Top Global Health Milestones in 2015 (plus an Honorable Mention)

(0) Comments | Posted December 21, 2015 | 10:17 AM


As this year closes, it offers an opportunity to reflect on how far we've come and the work yet to be done.

Global health gains in the third millennium have been nothing short of
amazing. The last 15 years have...

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The Best Buys in Global Health: Striking the Effective Balance

(0) Comments | Posted March 18, 2014 | 6:38 PM

In this issue of PSI's Impact magazine, Devex, Merck for Mothers and PATH joined my organization PSI and a team of experts to uncover some of global health's best investments. This post appears as the magazine's "Final Word."

A 'best buy' in...

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CVS Takes a Page From Development Playbook

(0) Comments | Posted February 19, 2014 | 1:07 PM

CVS's decision to quit marketing tobacco products is getting lots of well-deserved attention. And, I'd imagine competitors will follow suit. But its shift from drug store to health care provider is even more striking.

From marketing everything one might want or need (cigarettes, detergent, gum, prescriptions) towards marketing what...

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Top 10 Global Health Moments of 2013

(1) Comments | Posted December 30, 2013 | 2:27 PM

The end of each year provides the opportunity to reflect on what transpired and what was accomplished. Global health saw plenty of victories and setbacks in 2013.

Drug-resistant TB, slowing donor funding, new outbreaks of polio and a devastating typhoon showed how easily progress can...

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What Male Circumcision Taught Us About the Future of Funding for Global Health

(1) Comments | Posted April 1, 2013 | 11:55 AM

Private capital is needed to test and develop proof that existing health solutions can be adapted to a developing world context. Once this proof is established, the solution has the power to unlock the large-scale government funding needed to dramatically improve health across the developing world.

As demonstrated in...

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Cancer in the Developing World: An Under-Prioritized Threat to Health and Development

(2) Comments | Posted February 6, 2013 | 9:31 AM

The rise of hundreds of millions of people out of poverty during the past 50 years is a story of tremendous, unprecedented human progress. A significant factor in this success has been the global community's coordinated effort to tackle serious health and economic barriers, like HIV, malaria, pneumonia, and lack...

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Even From Davos, Family Planning Gets a Fresh Look

(0) Comments | Posted January 25, 2013 | 10:55 AM

2012 may be remembered for many things good and bad, but one undeniably positive story is the way in which family planning and women's reproductive choices and rights came back into the sunlight after too many years in the shadows of the global health and development agenda.

The July...

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10 Global Health Achievements in 2011

(6) Comments | Posted December 29, 2011 | 10:07 AM

The year 2011 brought with it a number of milestones for the global health community.

Despite real economic pressures and many competing priorities, across the world, governments, private companies, foundations, doctors, and individual volunteers worked to create a world where opportunity and hope are not crippled by poor health....

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In a Big Risk-Taking Mood?

(0) Comments | Posted October 4, 2011 | 5:32 PM

This autumn, as Congress enters tense budget discussions, U.S. taxpayers are asking legitimate questions. Amid economic instability and worries at home, Americans are scrutinizing where their tax dollars are going and who they are helping. In particular, Americans often ask, why do we spend so many of our tax dollars...

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World Malaria Day: Our Work Is Not Over

(0) Comments | Posted April 25, 2011 | 7:07 PM

"Baseball and Malaria keep coming back."

So said famed baseball player and manager Gene Mauch. Our objective on World Malaria Day -- today, April 25 -- is to show that the second part of Mauch's statement no longer has the certainty of baseball.

2010 was the biggest year in...

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Davos, the MDGs -- and What's Missing

(0) Comments | Posted February 1, 2011 | 9:30 AM

I just returned from the World Economic Forum's Annual Meeting in Davos, Switzerland. More than 2,500 business, civil society, religious, governmental and youth leaders, from "tech pioneers" to "young global leaders" to business tycoons. Bill Gates and Bono dropped by, too many prime ministers to count -- even...

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Addressing a Global Killer This World Pneumonia Day

(1) Comments | Posted November 11, 2010 | 5:31 PM

Take a deep breath and hold it.

Do you remember the last time you had a cough or shortness of breath? For millions of kids in the developing world, seemingly benign common cold symptoms can be a death sentence.

Aung Soe was 2 years old when she developed...

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On World Water Week 2010

(0) Comments | Posted August 31, 2010 | 1:29 PM

In the time it takes you to read this post, another eight children in developing countries will have died from water-related illnesses. That, I think we can all agree, is no way to start the school year.

In fact, at least 1.6 million children from developing countries won't be...

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Let Women Deliver For Us All

(0) Comments | Posted June 8, 2010 | 4:30 PM

In April, the Lancet released some encouraging statistics on maternal health: maternal deaths dropped from about 526,000 in 1980 to around 340,000 maternal deaths worldwide in 2008.
This is a decline worth celebrating, but not a reason to pull back; if anything, this study should drive us to do...

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Lessons From Africa: The Leadership Spark

(1) Comments | Posted May 13, 2010 | 12:12 PM

The world has poured billions of dollars into Africa in recent decades trying to address poverty, disease and malnutrition. We know that progress has been too slow, and too uneven.

Last week, many eyes were turned toward Tanzania, where some of the world's brightest minds gathered...

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Meetings, Ministers and the Least Appealing of all Causes

(0) Comments | Posted April 26, 2010 | 11:36 AM

There are lots of "high-level meetings" in Washington, but this weekend's High Level Meeting on Sanitation and Safe Water for All deserves more than the usual cynicism. For the first time ever, Finance and Water Ministers from around the world are gathering together to focus on that most basic of...

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Reflections on Haiti

(0) Comments | Posted January 21, 2010 | 5:35 PM

For more than 20 years, PSI has worked in Haiti and with Haitians to help improve the lives of vulnerable populations there. The January 12 earthquake in Port-au-Prince was devastating to our staff, knocked the wind out of our operations, and scarred the hearts of all of us who know...

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Hope for Uganda's Women

(0) Comments | Posted November 16, 2009 | 10:00 AM

I wanted to introduce you to one of my colleagues: Julius Lukwago, Director of Marketing and Communications at PSI's affiliate organization in Uganda, PACE. Julius has been working on PACE programs to improve maternal and child health since 2004 and he's currently leading our presence at the International Conference...

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Pneumonia: Why Do We Let It Get Away With This Much?

(0) Comments | Posted November 1, 2009 | 9:43 PM

Did you know there was a "World Pneumonia Day"? It may not sound very exciting, but the toll this treatable disease takes on children around the world should make you sit up and take note. In the time it takes you to read this post, at least six more kids...

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