Russia strengthens commitment to reversing the AIDS epidemic in the region

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Russia strengthens commitment to reversing the AIDS epidemic in the region

14 June 2013

Gennadiy Onishchenko, Head of the Federal Service on Customers' Rights Protection and Human Well-being Surveillance (Rospoterbnadzor) speaking to the press during the G20 Civil Summit. Credit: Aleksey Neshin

The Russian Federation and UNAIDS have launched a new Regional Cooperation Programme for Technical Assistance for HIV and other Infectious Diseases in the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS). The US$ 16 million Programme, funded by the Russian Government, was launched during the G20 Civil Summit which was held in Moscow from 11-13 June.

The Programme, which will run from 2013-2015, will be implemented by the Federal Service on Customers' Rights Protection and Human Well-being Surveillance (Rospotrebnadzor), UNAIDS, regional civil society organizations and counterparts in four partner countries—Armenia, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.

Gennadiy Onishchenko, Head of Rospoterbnadzor emphasised that the programme “will strengthen health systems, ensure better epidemiological surveillance of HIV, and promote the scale up HIV prevention programmes for key populations at higher risk of HIV, especially migrants”.

The programme will strengthen health systems, ensure better epidemiological surveillance of HIV, and promote the scale up HIV prevention programmes for key populations at higher risk of HIV, especially migrants.

Gennadiy Onishchenko, Head of Rospoterbnadzor

In recent years the international donor community has scaled back its commitments in CIS countries, leaving many struggling to maintain their responses to HIV. This new Programme will support partner countries to explore new sources of funding to sustain and scale up their responses. Moving towards a sustainable funding model will be a key to future success in meeting the Millennium Development Goals by 2015.

Since 2006, the Russian Government has allocated more than US$ 500 million to support international programmes to reduce the spread of infectious diseases, including HIV. A significant portion of Russia’s support is focused on technical assistance to CIS countries in the form of laboratory equipment and supplies, test systems and training. Russian expertise is also used to strengthen national capacities to control infectious diseases through knowledge transfer and knowledge exchange.

Infectious diseases, including HIV, will be on the agenda of the G8 as a priority of the Russian Government as it assumes its role of G8 President in 2014.