KINSHASA, Democratic Republic of Congo, September 15
Ahead of the Fifth Replenishment Conference of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria, to be held in Montreal, Canada, on 16 and 17 September, UNAIDS is calling on donors to fully fund the Global Fund. The Global Fund, a financing institution that raises and invests funds to support HIV, tuberculosis and malaria programmes, is calling for US$ 13 billion over the three-year period 2017–2019.
The Global Fund’s investment in HIV programmes has played an important part in the incredible progress made by countries over the past 15 years. This progress has inspired global commitments to end the AIDS epidemic as a public health threat by 2030, which will require scaling up and front-loading investments.
“A successful replenishment of the Global Fund is critical,” said Michel Sidibé, Executive Director of UNAIDS. “We are entering a make or break point that will determine whether we end AIDS or whether the epidemic will be prolonged indefinitely.”
In June 2016, the United Nations General Assembly adopted a Political Declaration in which countries committed to a Fast-Track response to reach three key targets by 2020:
– Reducing new HIV infections to fewer than 500 000 globally.
– Reducing AIDS-related deaths to fewer than 500 000 globally.
– Eliminating HIV-related stigma and discrimination.
All partners in the AIDS response need to be well-equipped and adequately funded to enable the AIDS response to overcome unresolved systemic and structural challenges and achieve the historic milestone of ending the AIDS epidemic as part of the Sustainable Development Goals.
Since the start of the epidemic, more than 78 million people have become infected with HIV and 35 million people have died of AIDS-related illnesses. UNAIDS has recently sounded the alarm about the epidemiological implications of a persistently high level of new HIV infections among adults, even as record numbers of people living with HIV have access to life-saving antiretroviral therapy. UNAIDS warns that if the number of new HIV infections rebounds, the AIDS epidemic could become impossible to control. Failing to meet global funding targets will result in more people becoming infected with HIV and more AIDS-related deaths.
“The Global Fund is a key anchor in our shared commitment to ending AIDS and needs the full political and financial backing of its donors,” said Mr Sidibé.
SOURCE: United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS