LEADERS IN THE FIGHT AGAINST HIV/AIDS MEET TO REVIEW PROGRESS
Bridgetown -- Leaders in the fight against HIV/AIDS in the Caribbean took time out to review past progress and plan for the future as a three-day meeting hosted by the United States' President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) got started on Tuesday, June 19.
Speaking at the portfolio review meeting of stakeholders in PEPFAR's Caribbean Regional Partnership Framework at the Accra Beach Hotel, U.S. Ambassador Larry L. Palmer emphasized the importance of collaboration in combating HIV/AIDS.
"One of the points that we continue to stress is that program integration is critical - not only integration between programs, but between the various institutions working on HIV/AIDS and within the U.S. government agencies working in PEPFAR itself. This one program/ one government approach is a new way of doing business and critical to the success of the program," said Ambassador Palmer.
Meeting participants included senior officials from health ministries, national AIDS program directors and advocates from non-governmental organizations working against HIV/AIDS.
The work of these groups is supported by the PEPFAR Caribbean Regional Program which is putting US$100m over the course of five years into lending technical assistance to help strengthen national HIV/AIDS programs throughout the region.
PEPFAR is a worldwide program launched in 2003 to reduce the incidence and limit the spread of HIV/AIDS while assisting those who have contracted the disease. PEPFAR represents the largest commitment in history made by a nation to a single disease. Worldwide, the PEPFAR program has treated over 4 million HIV-infected people, provided care for over 13 million people, and provided counseling and testing for over 40 million people.