AIHA Gears Up to Showcase Successful Projects at AIDS 2018 in Amsterdam

Amsterdam, July 23, 2018 – AIHA is thrilled to be participating in the 22nd International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2018), which officially kicked off today in Amsterdam after a weekend full of pre-conference workshops and sessions.

Some 15,000 scientists, activists, lawmakers, program implementers, and funders have gathered in this European city, where they will share best practices and lessons learned from nearly 40 years of tackling a pandemic that has already claimed 35 million lives.

The theme of AIDS 2018 is “Breaking Barriers, Building Bridges,” in recognition of the people who have all too often borne the brunt of the global pandemic, while at the same time being left out of mainstream responses.

“The biggest barriers now to ending the epidemic are ideologically and politically driven,” said Linda-Gail Bekker, President of the International AIDS Society (IAS) and International Scientific Chair of AIDS 2018. “Together, we will hold policymakers and donors accountable to the evidence – the end of AIDS will only come from prioritizing science-based policies, ensuring adequate funding and working hard together to be certain that no one is left behind.”

Peter Reiss, Local Chair of AIDS 2018 and a Professor of Medicine at Amsterdam University Medical Centers, University of Amsterdam, said: “Today, Amsterdam is a Fast-Track City, vigorously accelerating efforts to meet the global goal of ending AIDS by 2030. Since the peak of its epidemic, the Netherlands faced the challenge of HIV and AIDS head on, embracing scientific evidence and working with populations that other countries marginalized and stigmatized.”

Stigma, marginalization, and even criminalization of people living with HIV or at high risk of contracting the virus are major barriers to access to care in Eastern Europe and Central Asia where AIHA got its start strengthening fragile health systems in 1992. According to UNAIDS, this is the only region in the world where HIV is rapidly increasing, with new infections up 30 percent since 2010.

On Tuesday, July 24, AIHA staff and partners will present four posters highlighting the work of three of our projects implemented through our HRSA-supported HIV/AIDS Twinning Center Program:

  • Strengthening data management and utilization to improve the quality of HIV/AIDS services provided by the Defence Forces of Zambia health facilities (TUPEE707)
  • Twinning partnerships support training programs introducing new health worker cadres in South Africa to sustain the HIV response (TUPEE593)
  • Using client tracking to improve access to counseling and testing services for adolescent girls and young women in Western Kenya (TUPEE695)
  • Using data to optimize provision of DREAMS social asset building services in safe spaces across two counties in Western Kenya (TUPEE679)

If you are attending the conference, please stop by to learn more. E-posters will also be made available on the conference website.

Stay tuned for more updates about AIHA @ AIDS 2018 as the week progresses!