Michel Sidibé-UNAIDS Executive Director
Michel Sidibé-UNAIDS Executive Director

“Our generation has been presented with an opportunity that must not be thrown away. We have the technology, medicines and tools to end the AIDS epidemic by 2030, averting more than 17 million new HIV infections and saving almost 11 million lives,”Sidibé emphasised.

Michel Sidibé-UNAIDS Executive Director
Michel Sidibé-UNAIDS Executive Director

AIDS-related illnesses are the leading cause of death among women of reproductive age globally and the primary cause of death among adolescents in Africa. Stigma and discrimination continue to stop people accessing health care, including HIV prevention and treatment services that reduce new infections and save lives. In some regions of the world, the numbers of HIV infections are actually increasing.

Currently, of the 36.7 million people living with HIV, less than half are accessing treatment. We are failing to reach the people most in need. These include adolescent girls and young women, sex workers, gay men and other men who have sex with men, transgender people, prisoners and people who inject drugs.
According to him, many nations have taken great steps in getting ahead of the epidemic.

“South Africa, for example, has reduced the number of new HIV infections from 600 000 in 2000 to 340 000 in 2014. Life expectancy has risen in many of the most severely affected countries in sub-Saharan Africa as access to HIV prevention, testing and treatment has been scaled up. Worldwide, there are now more than 17 million people living with HIV accessing live-saving antiretroviral treatment,” he says.

But as world leaders grapple with a growing number of global concerns and threats, including massive displacement, climate change and an uncertain economic outlook—it would be a misstep to let up on the response to HIV, says the Executive Director.

He noted:”AIDS deserves continued attention and a Fast-Track approach to serve as a beacon for what can be achieved through international solidarity and political will.”

The United Nations General Assembly High-Level Meeting on Ending AIDS to place in New York, United States of America, from 8 to 10 June 2016 will bring people together around a common objective: ending AIDS by 2030 within the framework of the Sustainable Development Goals.

“This global platform for innovators, implementers, investors, activists and leaders will challenge all of us to chart a course to end the AIDS epidemic by 2030. It will take our combined efforts to source sustainable solutions to close the gaps and reach a set of new global targets,”Sidibé stated.
Sidibé says achieving the 90-90-90 treatment target by 2020 will be a key factor to ending the AIDS epidemic.

“A Fast-Track approach to ending the AIDS epidemic requires a set of ambitious time-bound targets, including reducing the number of people newly infected with HIV from 2.1 million in 2015 to fewer than 500 000 in 2020, reducing the number of people dying from AIDS-related illnesses from 1.1 million in 2015 to fewer than 500 000 in 2020 and eliminating HIV-related discrimination.

“This calls for 90% of people living with HIV to know their status, 90% of people who know their HIV positive status to access antiretroviral treatment and 90% of people on treatment to have suppressed viral loads.

“Meeting this treatment target will set the world on course to ending the AIDS epidemic by 2030. But bold leadership and stronger investment are required. By 2020, combined domestic and international resources will need to increase by about one third to peak at an estimated US$ 26.2 billion to achieve this vision.

“A lack of investment now will result in the epidemic being prolonged indefinitely and that would be a false economy,” he stressed.

Source Samuel Hinneh


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.