Monthly Archives: April 2011

A threat to winning the war on AIDS: neglect of injection drug users

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First, the good news. HIV prevalence around the world is starting to stablize, with overall growth in numbers of new infections slowing in most areas. But not all populations are experiencing this trend. “In Kenya and Tanzania, overall HIV incidence is stable, but the number of HIV infections among injection drug users (IDUs) is rising,” […]

Eliminating TB, curbing AIDS orphans with ART scale-up, and more…

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The following is a compilation of recent articles and news pieces making headlines in HIV/TB and global health. How to Wipe Out Tuberculosis: In an opinion piece published in U.S. News & World Report, the ministers of health from South Africa, Lesotho and Swaziland called on the international community for help eliminating tuberculosis from the […]

Congressional briefing to highlight role of health product innovation

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On May 3, 2011, GHTC will host its second annual Congressional briefing to highlight the need for and role of new health products for diseases affecting people around the world. Titled “Sparking innovation to save lives: How the US can advance global health through new technologies”— the event will be held in the Kennedy Caucus Room (SR-325) of the Russel Senate Building on May 3 from 11:30 am to 1:00 pm. Aiming to highlight the role of research, science, and innovation in meeting U.S. global health and development objectives, a high-level panel will examine key policy issues most critical in meeting the future needs of the developing world. (Read more)

Updated: FEM-PrEP HIV prevention study halted

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FHI issued a statement Monday morning announcing that the FEM-PrEP trial – looking at once-daily administration of the antiretroviral drug Truvada (emtricitabine and tenofovir) versus a placebo among high-risk heterosexual, HIV-negative women for preventing HIV infection – has been halted due to inability to determine effectiveness.

**Update: On a conference call convened by AVAC Tuesday, FHI representatives explained that self-reported adherence to the study drug was approximately 95 percent, excluding external factors such as stopping medication due to pregnancy. Trial investigators have blood specimens from partipants at certain intervals during the trial that they are testing for drug levels. Results from those tests will be reported in the coming months.

Hearing on U.S. budget for Africa includes look at AIDS response

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The Senate Subcommittee on Africa hosted a hearing on the President’s fiscal year (FY) 2012 budget for Africa Thursday, at which the Asst. Secretary of State for Africa Johnny Carson and Global AIDS Ambassador Eric Goosby testified. Testimony included discussion about the $7.8 billion requested by the Obama Administration for the African region for FY 2012, an overview of PEPFAR and Global Fund activity and progress in the area, and potential for certain countries to manage their own HIV responses within the next five to 10 years. Read More…

Civil society compiles ‘asks’ for UN AIDS meeting; Orgs urge Obama to personally attend

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A group of national, regional, global and constituency-based organizations have developed a civil society “zero draft” declaration to assist in coordinated advocacy with United Nations (UN) participating governments in advance of the upcoming UN high-level meeting on AIDS.  Organizations intend the draft to be used during negotiations with governments in New York and in the national […]

Ask an Expert: Breast feeding vs formula and mother-to-child HIV transmission

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In our first Ask-an-Expert submission, Emily Blynn from Washington, DC, writes: I have read in various places that for HIV positive mothers, if formula is not consistently available for some reason, be it financial or physical access or otherwise, consistent breastfeeding is less likely to transmit the virus to the infant than switching off and […]

Updated: 2011 budget deal takes hit at PEPFAR and NIH

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The budget deal cut between House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH), Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) and President Barack Obama calls for a 0.2 percent across-the-board cut in non-defense discretionary programs and contains further reductions for the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) and biomedical research at the National Institutes of Health (NIH)… (Read more)

Supporting female condoms, drug-resistant TB in Russia, and more

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The following is a compilation of recent articles and news pieces making headlines in HIV/TB and global health. The new profile of Drug-Resistant TB in Russia: The Institute of Medicine (IOM) recently released a report on the threat of drug-resistant TB and ways to combat it, this time a perspective from Russia. The report is […]

Civil society speaks out at UN in advance of AIDS high-level meeting

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“This year is a moment of truth in the global AIDS response… We are on the brink of real success but funding has flat-lined,” said United Nations (UN) Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon Friday at an informational interactive hearing for members of civil society in advance of the High-Level Meeting (HLM) on HIV/AIDS, set to take place in New York City June 8-10.

“HIV continues to spread – five people are infected every minute of every day,” Ki-moon said, reflecting on the last high-level meeting on AIDS in 2001, where targets such as universal access to treatment for all HIV-infected persons and the virtual elimination of mother-to-child transmission by 2010 were declared. “The targets we set in 2001 remain valid but the deadlines we set for meeting them have passed…” (Read more)