2011 United Nations High-Level Meeting on AIDS
9 June 2011
Dr Chan speaks at Panel 3
At the Panel 3 on Innovation and New technologies of the UN High-Level Meeting on AIDS, Dr Margaret Chan called for broad innovation in HIV/AIDS interventions and technologies as well as service delivery approaches. "Over the past 30 years, the HIV response has spearheaded innovation in public health," noted Dr Chan.
However, global community collectively is "running behind" the HIV epidemic she said calling for "two-pronged innovation" in the next step of the AIDS response. "Accelerating access to existing innovations is key," underlined Dr Chan. "But we need to continue investing in new tools to do more. Without new innovation we will not see major breakthrough."
The Panel included Dr Jose Angel Cordova Villalobos, Minister of Health of Mexico, Dr Christoforos Mallouris of the Global Network of People Living with HIV and was chaired by Ratu Epeli Nailatakau, the President of Fiji, and moderated by Andrew Jack, reporter of the Financial Times.
9 June 2011
Dr Gottfried Hirnschall comments on HIV treatment as prevention
The Ministerial Roundtable "The game-changer: treatment for prevention" focused on opportunities and challenges to bridge the gap between new scientific evidence and turning the evidence into real treatment for millions in need. Dr Gottfried Hirnschall, WHO's Director of HIV/AIDS Department noted the encouraging response and support the countries have shown to the 2010 HIV treatment guidelines that advised earlier initiation of HIV treatment thus increasing the need for it.
"New evidence on treatment as prevention is an enormous game-changer and has given us the necessary hard evidence confirming what we knew," said Dr Hirnschall. "WHO is now set to release guidelines on HIV testing and counselling for couples (with one positive partner) to propose that couples get tested together, that in itself may sound normal, but not that easy in reality... We are putting together an expert group that will be looking at all the evidence we have and see how best we can use this powerful tool in the best way and the most strategic way."
7 June 2011
WHO HIV/AIDS Director comments on the future of HIV treatment
At the pre-conference event "HIV treatment - reducing deaths, illness, and HIV infections while keeping costs down", organized by Medecins Sans Frontiers (MSF), the WHO's Director of HIV/AIDS Department Dr Gottfried Hirnschall reflected on the past experiences and future directions in the global HIV treatment scale up. Congratulating MSF for its genuine efforts to summarize country experiences in scaling up treatment which were presented at the event, Dr Hirnschall said, "All lessons are important. But we should not allow another double standard (for HIV treatment) in the north and the south".
Expressing hope that "we globally will be working to move towards 15 million people on treatment by 2015" following from the UN High-Level Meeting to open the next day, Dr Hirnschall also underlined that the principle of accountability will be a critical notion for WHO in scaling up HIV treatment over the next decade.