WASHINGTON, DC, 10 March 2008 – HIV/AIDS implementers from around the world will gather in Kampala, Uganda, from June 3-7 for the 2008 HIV/AIDS Implementers’ Meeting. Recognizing the rapid expansion of HIV/AIDS programs worldwide, the focus of this year’s meeting is building the capacity of local prevention, treatment, and care programs; enhancing quality; and promoting coordination among partners.
The meeting’s theme is “Scaling Up Through Partnerships: Overcoming Obstacles to Implementation.” A total of 1,700 attendees are expected, representing governments, non-governmental organizations including faith- and community-based groups, multilateral organizations, the private sector, and groups of people living with HIV/AIDS. Through presentations, dialogue and networking, participants will identify critical barriers and share information that will directly impact HIV/AIDS program implementation in the coming years.
“The experience in Uganda in fighting HIV/AIDS is a true reflection of the meeting’s theme,” said Dr Kihumuro Apuuli, Director General of the Uganda AIDS Commission. “Uganda's achievements in fighting the epidemic cannot be attributed to a single stakeholder or even a cluster of stakeholders, but the collective efforts of all.”
Building on the 2007 Implementers’ meeting held in Kigali, Rwanda, the meeting is hosted by the Government of Uganda and is once again sponsored by the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR); The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria; UNAIDS; UNICEF; the World Bank; the World Health Organization; and the Global Network of People Living with HIV/AIDS.
“The achievements in the global response to HIV/AIDS in recent years are rooted in the partnerships with host nations to build their systems and to empower individuals, communities and nations to tackle their epidemics,” said Ambassador Mark Dybul, PEPFAR Coordinator. “The 2008 Implementers’ Meeting is an opportunity for all partners to come together to share ideas to further strengthen the global response.”
“The scale up of AIDS programs now taking place in Africa and the rest of the world is generating tremendous knowledge and experience,” said Dr. Michel Kazatchkine, Executive Director of the Global Fund. “Through the annual Implementers’ Meeting, we can ensure that this knowledge is shared and work becomes more effective and has stronger impact as we move towards universal access to AIDS treatment and prevention services.”
Six themes for the meeting have been identified that cut across all areas of HIV/AIDS programming: monitoring and evaluation for impact improvement, human capacity development, knowing your epidemic and response, coordination and harmonization, linking people with resources, and integration of services.
“Sharing best practices and lessons learned in implementing programs is an essential part of informing future AIDS programming,” said Dr. Peter Piot, Executive Director, UNAIDS. “The first meeting took place in Kigali last year and I look forward to seeing the progress made in scaling up the response to the epidemic and overcoming the barriers to universal access to HIV prevention, treatment, care and support,” he added.
“Programs to prevent HIV transmission from mother to newborn, to diagnose and treat HIV-positive children, to prevent infections among adolescents and to care for orphans and children affected by AIDS are now part of the AIDS strategies of nearly every country,” said Jimmy Kolker, Chief of the HIV and AIDS Section at UNICEF. “Coming together to share best practices will move us closer to an AIDS-free generation. Kampala will reaffirm the priority that the global community must continue to give to the fight against AIDS.”
Notification of accepted abstracts will be made on or before March 14, 2008. HIV/AIDS implementers interested in attending the meeting should visit www.hivimplementers.org/registration.asp for more information.
For further information, please contact: Kristin Pugh, PEPFAR Washington DC, +1-202-663-2708; Jon Lidén, The Global Fund Geneva, +41 22 791 1723; Sophie Barton-Knott, UNAIDS Geneva, +41 22 791 1697; Najwa Mekki, UNICEF New York, +1-212-326-7162, firstname.lastname@example.org
Information about the host of the meeting: The Government of Uganda through the Uganda AIDS Commission (UAC) ensures a focused and harmonized response to the HIV/AIDS epidemic by the Government of Uganda. UAC provides strategic leadership by ensuring effective harmonization of the HIV/AIDS-related activities of the various players within agreed policy and program parameters. For more information about UAC, please visit www.aidsuganda.org/.
Information about the sponsors of the meeting: The U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) employs the most diverse prevention, treatment and care strategy in the world, with an emphasis on transparency and accountability for results. The goals of the Emergency Plan’s first five years include support for treatment for two million HIV-infected people, support for prevention of seven million new infections, and support for care for 10 million people infected or affected by HIV/AIDS. For more information about PEPFAR, please visit www.PEPFAR.gov.
The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria is a unique global public/private partnership dedicated to attracting and disbursing additional resources to prevent and treat HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. This partnership between governments, civil society, the private sector and affected communities represents a new approach to international health financing. The Global Fund works in close collaboration with other bilateral and multilateral organizations to supplement existing efforts dealing with the three diseases. For more information about the Global Fund, please visit www.theglobalfund.org.
UNAIDS, the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS, is an innovative joint venture of the United Nations, bringing together the efforts and resources of the UNAIDS Secretariat and ten UN system organizations in the AIDS response. The Secretariat headquarters is in Geneva, Switzerland—with staff on the ground in more than 80 countries. Coherent action on AIDS by the UN system is coordinated in countries through UN theme groups, and joint programmes on AIDS. UNAIDS’ Cosponsors include UNHCR, UNICEF, WFP, UNDP, UNFPA, UNODC, ILO, UNESCO, WHO and the World Bank. Visit the UNAIDS website at www.unaids.org.
UNICEF is on the ground in over 150 countries and territories to help children survive and thrive, from early childhood through adolescence. The world’s largest provider of vaccines for developing countries, UNICEF supports child health and nutrition, good water and sanitation, quality basic education for all boys and girls, and the protection of children from violence, exploitation, and AIDS. UNICEF is funded entirely by the voluntary contributions of individuals, businesses, foundations, and governments. For more information, please visit www.unicef.org.
The World Bank is engaged in the fight against AIDS, which is threatening to reverse the gains of development, to further its mission of fighting poverty. The World Bank provides comprehensive and sustainable financing for AIDS programs worldwide and to date has committed more than US $3.7 billion since 1988. For more information on the World Bank’s response to HIV/AIDS, please visit www.worldbank.org/aids.
The World Health Organization is the directing and coordinating authority on international health work and takes the lead in the United Nations system in the global health sector response to the AIDS epidemic. For more information, please visit www.who.int.
The Global Network of People Living with HIV/AIDS (GNP+) is a global network for and by people living with HIV/AIDS (PLHIV). Its overall aim is to improve the quality of life of PLHIV. The work of GNP+ is guided by the Global Advocacy Agenda, which consists of three key areas: (i) Promoting universal access to HIV/AIDS care, treatment and prevention; (ii) Combating stigma and discrimination; and (iii) Promoting the greater and more meaningful involvement of PLHIV. GNP+ is the only international network representing the diverse voices of all PLHIV. As a network based on emancipation and self-determination, GNP+ nurtured the development of six fully independent regional networks of PLHIV covering Africa (NAP+), Asia (APN+), the Caribbean (CRN+), Europe (GNP+ Europe), Latin America (REDLa+) and North America (GNP+ NA). Elected representatives from these networks form the GNP+ Board. For more information, please visit www.gnpplus.net.