KAMPALA, UGANDA 28 May 2010 – Participants in a four-day international meeting on providing services for adolescents living with HIV are cautiously optimistic about progress made in meeting the needs of this often marginalised group. But they remain concerned that much must still be done to ensure that all adolescents who need assistance receive it.
UNICEF, and the World Health Organization in partnership with the Global Network of People living with HIV/AIDS, FHI, Uganda Paediatrics Association and the Makerere University – John Hopkins Research Collaboration jointly convened the Second Global Consultation on Service Provision for Adolescents Living with HIV in Kampala on 24-28 May.
The meeting brought together government figures, civil society groups, UN representatives, donors and service providers, as well as adolescents and young people living with the virus.
A joint communique released at the end of the Consultation states that participants “…are encouraged by recent progress in efforts to respond more adequately to the specific needs of adolescents aged 10-19 living with HIV.”
“But,” the document continues, “we remain seriously concerned about the many gaps that remain, which make it impossible for some adolescents living with HIV to live healthy, happy and productive lives.
Consultation participants offered eight recommendations for determining the number of HIV-positive young people and ensuring that services to benefit them are both fully adequate and readily available.
Those recommendations include:
Consultation participants believe that implementation of these recommendations will lead to lower rates of poor health and death among adolescents living with HIV. The communique points to five key results:
The Second Global Consultation called on donors, governments and multilateral institutions to prioritise the needs of adolescents living with HIV by allocating resources aimed at producing the results defined in the meeting.
Worldwide, 2.1 million children under 15 years living with HIV. Among young people aged 15-24 in low- and middle-income countries, an estimated 4.9 million are living with the virus.
For further information, please contact:
Dr Sabrina Kitaka, Uganda Paediatric Association (UPA)
Linda Barlow-Mosha, Makerere University-Johns Hopkins University Research Collaboration (MU-JHU)
Adam Garner, Global Network of People Living with HIV (GNP+)
Joy Cunningham, FHI