Message from UNAIDS Executive Director Michel Sidibé on the occasion of World TB Day 2013
GENEVA, 24 March 2013—Every day more than 1000 people living with HIV die of tuberculosis. This is unacceptable. Today we have the knowledge and the power to stop HIV and TB in their tracks. By integrating HIV and TB services and systems, we can save millions of lives and millions of dollars.
UNAIDS is calling for Zero parallel systems for HIV and TB. This means that HIV and TB systems should be fully integrated, every person living with HIV is tested for TB and that every person with TB is offered an HIV test, and people with TB who are HIV-positive are started on antiretroviral treatment immediately.
WHO/World Bank convene ministerial meeting to discuss best practices for moving forward on universal health coverage
Top officials from health and finance ministries from 27 countries joined other high-level health and development stakeholders at a two-day meeting this week in Geneva to discuss ways that countries are progressing towards universal health coverage. The meeting was convened jointly by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the World Bank and took place just weeks after the United Nations General Assembly adopted a resolution supporting universal health coverage.
Delegates at the Geneva meeting expressed strong support for the ideas underlying universal health coverage: that everyone, irrespective of their ability to pay, should have access to the health services they need, without putting their families at financial risk.
Global leaders in health statistics gathered in Geneva this week to discuss future possibilities of collaboration to improve current practices in health estimates.
At a meeting hosted by the World Health Organization (WHO), representatives from WHO, the United Nations Population Division and other UN agencies, the World Bank, development foundations, academic institutions and scientific journals committed to working together more closely for better calculation, sharing and communication of estimates of health indicators.
Participants agreed unanimously on the need for increased investment in data collection, particularly on deaths and their causes.
Last week South Africa became the first country to sign a new international treaty aimed at combating tobacco smuggling.
Minister of Health, Dr Aaron Motsoaledi, signed the Protocol to Eliminate Illicit Trade in Tobacco Products at a ceremony held at the WHO headquarters in Geneva on Thursday. Eleven other countries including China, France, Panama, Turkey and Uruguay have also signed the treaty, which is now open for signature by other countries.
UNAIDS reports a more than 50% drop in new HIV infections across 25 countries as countries approach the 1000 day deadline to achieve global AIDS targets
In addition, the number of people with access to antiretroviral therapy increased by 63% in the last 24 months—AIDS-related deaths fell by more than 25% between 2005 and 2011 globally.
The first-ever global monitoring framework to combat several of the world’s biggest killers has been agreed this week by WHO Member States. The framework comprises nine voluntary global targets and 25 indicators to prevent and control diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, cancer, chronic lung disease and other noncommunicable diseases. The draft framework aims to focus efforts to address the impact of noncommunicable diseases and assess:
The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria has released initial details on its new funding model, which will change the way countries apply for money. But as the Fund works to finalize the model before next year, civil society is criticizing the process for being untransparent and rushed.
The Global Fund board adopted guiding principles of the model at a mid-September board meeting in Geneva. Although the model’s finer aspects are still being developed, key elements include the allocation of funding to country groupings based on disease burden and ability to pay as well as largely foreseen changes to grant application procedures.
Fewer people infected with HIV globally are dying as more of them get access to crucial antiretroviral drugs, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa, the United Nations AIDS program said on Wednesday.
The United Nations estimates that about 34 million people are living with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) that causes AIDS. It said in a report released ahead of the International AIDS Society's 2012 annual meeting set for next week in Washington, D.C., that the number of worldwide AIDS-related deaths fell to 1.7 million last year -- down from a peak of 2.3 million in 2005 and from some 1.8 million in 2010.
The World Health Organization announced on Friday it was set to approve a new target to reduce premature deaths from chronic illnesses such as heart disease by a quarter by 2025.
Cardiovascular disease, diabetes, cancer and chronic respiratory conditions are known in medical terms as non-communicable diseases (NCDs) and represent the world's biggest killers -- accounting for 63 percent of all deaths.
About a quarter of victims die prematurely, between the ages of 30 and 70.
Late Thursday, WHO member states meeting in Geneva made a "landmark" decision to fix the 25 percent reduction target which is expected to be formally adopted on Saturday, the UN health agency said.