Saturday, December 1, is World AIDS Day, an annual opportunity
for people worldwide to unite in the fight against this devastating pandemic. It is a day for commemorating the 30 million
people we have lost to AIDS-related causes, to honor the 34 million people
living with HIV, and to recommit ourselves to creating a future without AIDS.
From 2011 to 2015, World AIDS Day has the theme, Getting
to zero: Zero new HIV infections. Zero discrimination. Zero AIDS-related deaths.
Commemorative events will be held in communities
around the world. Check with your local
AIDS organizations, visit www.worldaidscampaign.org for a calendar
of events, or go to POZ.com for a list of events in the United States.
In commemoration of World AIDS Day, the UK-based
organization, AVERT, has published a series of reflections by global leaders in
the fight against AIDS. amfAR CEO Kevin
Robert Frost was invited to submit an article summarizing some of the
Foundation’s recent research initiatives and it can be found here.
On November 29, in conjunction with World AIDS Day 2012, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton released a blueprint for an AIDS-free generation. “We want the next Congress, the next Secretary of State, and all of our partners here at home and around the world to have a clear picture of everything we’ve learned and a roadmap that shows what we will contribute to achieving an AIDS-free generation,” said Secretary Clinton when she announced the blueprint at the International AIDS Conference in Washington, D.C., in July.
Officially titled “PEPFAR Blueprint: Creating an AIDS-Free Generation,” the report underscores the importance of the three core interventions Secretary of State Hillary Clinton emphasized in her November 2011 address at the National Institutes of Health: HIV treatment, voluntary medical male circumcision, and services to prevent vertical transmission (from mother to child). Additionally, the blueprint emphasizes the need for investments that focus on the populations most at risk for HIV infection, including gay men and other men who have sex with men (MSM), sex workers, and injecting drug users (IDUs).
“Secretary Clinton’s commitment recognizes that we
can’t achieve an AIDS-free generation unless we do much better at meeting the
HIV needs of those groups at the center of the epidemic, including gay men and
other MSM, injecting drug users, and sex workers,” said amfAR CEO Kevin Robert
“When you want to accomplish a complex goal—like
starting to end the AIDS epidemic—you need a clear plan of action,” said Chris
Collins, amfAR’s vice president and director of public policy. “Creating a
blueprint is an important step forward because it directs our planning, policy,
and funding toward achieving clear goals, and it will help everyone engaged in
the process monitor our progress towards an AIDS-free generation."