Commentary & Opinion
U.N. Secretary-General Calls for International Community to "Rally Around" Next Generation of HIV Treatment, Increase Support for Countries in Need
June 16, 2010
Following a recent trip to the largest HIV/AIDS clinic in Uganda, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon reflects on the recent progress made in the fight against the disease in a McClatchy opinion piece. Though "Uganda was the epicenter of the AIDS epidemic. ... Uganda is also a success story," Ban writes. "A decade ago, fewer than 10,000 people were on the new generation of antiretroviral drugs that suppress the disease and offer the promise of a normal life. Today, that figure is 200,000, thanks in large measure to generous support from the United States (under its PEPFAR program) and the Global Fund in Geneva." Ban names several other African nations who have demonstrated similar progress in the fight against HIV/AIDS.
"And yet, there is a new and growing danger that these advances might not be sustained," Ban continues, before describing the challenges associated with the number of patients in need of treatment as "money ... is drying up," due, in part, to the global recession, and a shift in the focus of donors "from AIDS to other diseases, where there is a sense that more lives can be saved more cheaply." Ban details the impact of funding shortages for HIV/AIDS treatments in Uganda and concludes, "At the International AIDS Conference in Vienna, in July, I hope the international community will rally around UNAIDS' launch of Treatment 2.0 -- the next generation of HIV treatment, which must be more affordable, more effective and accessible to all" (6/15).
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This article was provided by Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. It is a part of the publication Kaiser Daily Global Health Policy Report. Visit the Kaiser Family Foundation's website to find out more about their activities, publications and services.
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