United States Global AIDS Coordinator presents PEPFAR’s vision to civil society
23 May 2014
On the side-lines of the sixty-seventh World Health Assembly, UNAIDS convened a meeting between European-based members of civil society with Ambassador Deborah Birx, the new United States Global AIDS Coordinator.
Ambassador Birx presented her vision for PEPFAR, including a focus on impact, accountability and transparency. She also emphasized the essential role of civil society in helping achieve an AIDS-free generation. "From the earliest days of the AIDS epidemic to the present, in communities and countries around the world, civil society has been at the very heart of an effective and accountable response. Moving forward, civil society's role remains as vital as ever."
Participants discussed a variety of issues including the need to invest in community capacity development and grass roots advocacy work, the impact that policies against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people have on service delivery and how to address this trend, drug pricing concerns, and the importance of working with faith based providers more directly. The group also discussed the value of using viral load as a measure of program success as well as opportunities to work together to intensify the global response to AIDS.
UNAIDS Deputy Executive Director Luiz Loures acknowledged this was Ambassador Birx's first meeting with civil society outside of the United States in her new role, and pledged continued collaboration. "UNAIDS is committed to working closely with PEPFAR to advance the response to AIDS. Ambassador Birx and I share a common commitment to ensure multiple stakeholders, including civil society, are meaningfully involved in that response."
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