New HIV infections down by 45% globally: UNAIDS
Leo Zekeng, country director, UN Joint Action Against HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), says the intervention of the Global Funds has helped to reduce new HIV infections globally by 45 per cent.
Mr Zekeng said during the seventh replenishment pre-conference on Saturday in Abuja that the Global Fund was indispensable in the fight against HIV.
“Global Fund matters to UNAIDS and the HIV response and is one of the key players in our collective response to AIDS as a public health threat by 2030.
“Global Fund provides funding to over 100 countries to plan and respond to the AIDS epidemic and represents 25 per cent of the international funding for the HIV response,” he said.
The UNAIDS’ chief commended the fund for saving lives globally and achieving what was once thought to be impossible.
According to him, with the impact of GF, total AIDS-related deaths have dropped by 65 per cent.
He added that with access to treatment, HIV positive persons have become free to enjoy life just like any HIV negative person.
Mr Zekeng expressed UNAIDS’ commitment to continuous collaboration with GF to develop health infrastructure, strengthen health systems and build the capacity of health personnel.
The country director expressed optimism that the world will provide at least the $18 billion GF needed to tackle the AIDS scourge and other deadly diseases by 2030.
He called on donors and recipient countries to stand in solidarity in fighting for what counted through successful seventh GF replenishment.
The GF’s seventh replenishment conference will be held later in September in the United States.
It is expected that the world will take bold action to protect everyone and everywhere from the deadliest infectious diseases such as TB, Malaria and HIV.
The intervention will build resilient and sustainable health systems and strengthen pandemic preparedness, so as to make the world more equitable and safer from future threats.
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