UN: UN, partners launch documentary film on HIV/AIDS treatment

New York, US (PANA) - UN Secretary-General's Special Envoy for Health in Agenda 2030, Mr. Ray Chambers, the US President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), and Lagos-based Ventures Africa, on Thursday launched a documentary film, titled: "Treatment For All: Our Lives, Our Stories", to support AIDS treatment expansion and stop the spread of HIV.

The film was launched at the ongoing 21st International AIDS Conference holding in Durban, South Africa.

A UN statement obtained by PANA in New York said the the film captured the deeply personal narratives of three African protagonists as they explored the impact of HIV on their lives and detailed the wider ecosystem that supports access to HIV treatment.

The documentary chronicled the HIV epidemic as told through unscripted monologues of people contemplating themselves, HIV, and treatment in relation to crosscutting themes such as happiness, mortality, relationships, stigma and work.

"This is the second film to support the #TreatmentforAll campaign, a global movement launched on the eve of World AIDS Day 2015 to bring an end to the AIDS epidemic by scaling-up access to treatment for all people diagnosed with HIV.

"#TreatmentforAll calls on countries to prioritize the adoption of key policies and provide high-quality implementation to support the collective vision of treatment for all people living with HIV, and the movement's shared goal is to ensure treatment for28 million people by 2020," it stated.

The statement quoted US Global AIDS Coordinator, Deborah Birx, as saying: "Achieving treatment for all would be a game changer in ending the epidemic by 2030.

"PEPFAR is supporting partner countries in rapidly adopting and implementing the 2015 WHO guidelines for 'Test and START' and more efficient service delivery models. Together, we can save and improve millions of lives."

On his part, Mr. Chambers said: "We have been at war with HIV/AIDS for over three decades now, amounting to millions of unnecessary deaths and affecting millions more. It is morally reprehensible to delay the delivery of treatment to all people suffering from the virus, particularly as we have the funding to provide all with treatment.

"It is our collective responsibility to heed this call and provide treatment for all now."

Mr. Uzo Iweala, Founder and CEO of Ventures Africa, said: "The way we speak about the epidemic is crucial in framing how the public at large, patients, health care providers and policy makers unite to find solutions to a problem that has been with us for so long.

"We have come so far in the last ten years and it is clear that improving access to treatment is key in changing the local and global narratives around HIV and AIDS.

"Treatment for All: Our Lives, Our Stories is a short film that in looking at how narratives change when treatment becomes available also seeks to change the way that we view HIV/AIDS in the twenty-first century."

According to the UN, recent momentum has set the path toward achieving #TreatmentforAll.

A total of 22 countries have already adopted the 2015 World Health Organization (WHO) Guidelines recommending that all people living with HIV be treated immediately, and many more countries have announced their intention to adopt these Guidelines by the end of 2016.

#TreatmentForAll was launched in response to WHO's landmark HIV treatment guidelines, which for the first time called for everyone infected with HIV to be treated immediately.

According to the Joint UN Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), nearly 37 million people are currently HIV-positive, and of those only 17 million are on treatment.

UNAIDS said treatment for all is key to ending the epidemic, and can be done with more efficient use of existing resources and critical policy changes in high HIV burden countries,  "by prioritizing and fast-tracking treatment."
-0-  PANA  AA/AR  21July2016

21 Julho 2016 16:20:47

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