Call for promises over HIV/AIDS to be honoured

By staff writers
December 1, 2006

Call for promises over HIV/AIDS to be honoured

-01/12/06

A quarter of a century after the first case was diagnosed, millions around the world are still dying from HIV and AIDS.

Catholic aid agency CAFOD is marking World AIDS Day by calling on the promises made to fight the disease to be honoured.

New figures show that an estimated 39.5 million people are living with HIV and AIDS, of which 2.3 million of those infected are children and, in 2006, 2.9 million people died of AIDS related illnesses.

In the past few years there have been new and renewed commitments made by governments, civil society and religious leaders.

The G8 Summit promised universal access to treatment, the UNís Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) aimed to reduce the spread of HIV, and there was renewed political commitment from national governments to increase funding at the UN special session on HIV and AIDS.

But CAFOD says these promises will only remain good intentions unless there is the political will to make them a reality.

Access to universal treatment is not yet a reality in Cambodia, one of South Asiaís hardest hit countries, with more than 100 new HIV infections reported every day.

CAFOD works in Cambodia providing hospice care and anti-retroviral drugs (ARVs). CAFOD partners have also been able to help those, who have regained their health because of life-saving drugs, to earn a living.

But universal access to treatment is far from being achieved in Cambodia. Only 14,300 of the estimated 123,000 HIV-positive people in the country have access to life-saving treatment.

CAFODís HIV and AIDS specialist Ann Smith says: "HIV and AIDS continue to take a terrible toll across the world, especially among the poorest.

"We must hold our leaders accountable to the promises they have made, and to hold ourselves and our communities accountable to their statements for action against HIV and AIDS.

"These include commitments that international leaders have made for funding and support and that national leaders have made on making healthcare programmes and access to treatment available to all.

"The message is for all kinds of leaders from G8 to local community leaders, so that everyone involved can truly honour these promises that ultimately affect the lives of millions of people across the world.

"If we want to deliver these promises, faith-based organisations are one way to deliver them as they are often working directly with those most affected by HIV and AIDS.

Call for promises over HIV/AIDS to be honoured

-01/12/06

A quarter of a century after the first case was diagnosed, millions around the world are still dying from HIV and AIDS.

Catholic aid agency CAFOD is marking World AIDS Day by calling on the promises made to fight the disease to be honoured.

New figures show that an estimated 39.5 million people are living with HIV and AIDS, of which 2.3 million of those infected are children and, in 2006, 2.9 million people died of AIDS related illnesses.

In the past few years there have been new and renewed commitments made by governments, civil society and religious leaders.

The G8 Summit promised universal access to treatment, the UNís Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) aimed to reduce the spread of HIV, and there was renewed political commitment from national governments to increase funding at the UN special session on HIV and AIDS.

But CAFOD says these promises will only remain good intentions unless there is the political will to make them a reality.

Access to universal treatment is not yet a reality in Cambodia, one of South Asiaís hardest hit countries, with more than 100 new HIV infections reported every day.

CAFOD works in Cambodia providing hospice care and anti-retroviral drugs (ARVs). CAFOD partners have also been able to help those, who have regained their health because of life-saving drugs, to earn a living.

But universal access to treatment is far from being achieved in Cambodia. Only 14,300 of the estimated 123,000 HIV-positive people in the country have access to life-saving treatment.

CAFODís HIV and AIDS specialist Ann Smith says: "HIV and AIDS continue to take a terrible toll across the world, especially among the poorest.

"We must hold our leaders accountable to the promises they have made, and to hold ourselves and our communities accountable to their statements for action against HIV and AIDS.

"These include commitments that international leaders have made for funding and support and that national leaders have made on making healthcare programmes and access to treatment available to all.

"The message is for all kinds of leaders from G8 to local community leaders, so that everyone involved can truly honour these promises that ultimately affect the lives of millions of people across the world.

"If we want to deliver these promises, faith-based organisations are one way to deliver them as they are often working directly with those most affected by HIV and AIDS.

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