19 November 2012
“Turning the Tide Together” in Washington DC this year suggested that significant recent breakthroughs could well be changing the trajectory of the epidemic.
Key factors which are having a big impact on the progress of the global spread of the disease include:
- Wider coverage of AntiRetroViral treatment
- A greater commitment to eliminating new HIV infections among children and keeping mothers alive
- Effectiveness of HIV treatment in preventing further spread of the virus
- Greater community engagement.
One example of this greater community involvement in which Edmund Rice Schools around the world have participated is the Caritas Internationalis HAART for Children campaign which advocates for increased research and development by pharmaceutical companies to formulate low-cost anti-retroviral medicines, adapted for use in low-income countries, for children living with HIV.
World AIDS Day on 1 December brings together people from around the world to raise awareness about HIV/AIDS and demonstrate international solidarity in the face of the pandemic. Between 2011-2015, World AIDS Days will have the theme of "Getting to zero: zero new HIV infections. Zero discrimination. Zero AIDS related deaths".
The campaign focus on "Zero AIDS related deaths" signifies a push towards greater access to treatment for all; a call for governments to act now. It is a call to honor promises and for African governments to at least hit targets for domestic spending on health and HIV.