Commission from UNAIDS and The Lancet could pave the way to zero HIV infections targetPosted: May 29, 2013
With huge steps made in the fight against HIV and AIDS over the past decades, it’s now more important than ever to accelerate efforts to make the vision of zero HIV infections a reality.
Recognising the need to bring people together to fuel these efforts, UNAIDS and medical journal The Lancet convened a new commission of political and health leaders to explore the post-2015 agenda of AIDS and global health
Informed by a diverse group of HIV and health experts, young people, activists and political leaders, the Commission will deliberate on strategies to ensure that the vision of zero new HIV infections, zero discrimination and zero AIDS-related deaths can be realised in the coming years.
“In just a decade, I have witnessed countries move from despair to the conviction that we can end this epidemic. This Commission can offer a way forward that allows us to accelerate our march towards the end of AIDS.” said President Joyce Banda, who is co-chairing the Commission along with Peter Piot, Director of London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. “This Commission can offer a way forward that allows us to accelerate our march towards the end of AIDS.”
There are opportunities to further apply the expertise developed around the HIV and AIDS agenda to other areas and the Commission will also examine how ideas that have been core to the AIDS movement, such as social equality, empowering communities and affordable medicines, can help global health results.
“As a new agenda for development is being shaped, it is time for serious thought on how the extraordinary lessons from the AIDS response can be brought to bear to transform global health,” said Piot.
The Commission will have the opportunity to systematically reflect on evidence and make recommendations. Building on on-going consultations and the findings of the United Nations Secretary-General’s High-Level Panel of Eminent Persons on the Post-2015 Development Agenda, the recommendations will contribute to the deliberations of UN Member States. The Commission’s work will culminate in a report published by the Lancet in early 2014.
“In so many important ways, the AIDS movement created global health. Now, as the MDG era comes to a close, the AIDS movement once again has an opportunity to use its great success and influence to shape a new epoch of sustainable development,” said Richard Horton, Editor in Chief of The Lancet.
The first meeting of the Commission will be hosted by President Banda in Lilongwe, Malawi on 28-29 June.