LONDON, November 30, 2021--(BUSINESS WIRE)--To commemorate World AIDS Day 2021, remember all who have lost their lives to AIDS-related illnesses, and honor those who carry on the fight, AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) will again hold a series of events united by the motto "AIDS: The Other Pandemic." This timely theme continues to serve as a reminder that even during the COVID-19 crisis, the world must protect the fragile gains made fighting HIV/AIDS, a pandemic that has raged for over 30 years.
A recent report by the Global Fund shows the pandemic significantly impacted health systems and service delivery in low- and middle-income countries in Africa and Asia last year. As a result, HIV service delivery has been disrupted in nearly two-thirds of countries. Additionally, HIV testing fell 41% from April to September 2020, compared to the same period in 2019. Despite many challenges, COVID-19 must not be used as a pretext to permanently scale back the global response to AIDS. In fact, the need to commit to fighting AIDS is greater than ever because of the pandemic.
"With the devastation COVID-19 has brought upon the world, it’s understandably stayed at the forefront for the past nearly two years – which is why World AIDS Day is so critical for remembering ‘The Other Pandemic,’" said Terri Ford, AHF Chief of Global Advocacy and Policy. "HIV/AIDS is still responsible for nearly 700,000 deaths worldwide each year. While world leaders must battle COVID-19, including committing to real action on global vaccine access, they must also keep the promise on AIDS by ensuring HIV testing and lifesaving treatment reaches everyone who needs it."
AHF will host diverse commemorative live and virtual events in most of its 45 countries. The events seek to refocus the world on the AIDS pandemic and the people living with or affected by HIV globally, and to serve as reminders of the importance of access to HIV testing, prevention, and treatment. Advocates everywhere are encouraged to join us as the world continues battling to end one of the deadliest infectious diseases in history, accounting for more than 36 million deaths globally since the start of "The Other Pandemic."
In the United Kingdom AHF UK will recognise World AIDS Day by co-hosting, alongside our partners KwaAfrica, an HIV testing and awareness day at the CVA Resource Centre in Croydon, south London. Alongside testing, the event will showcase HIV and sexual health services and support that a range of providers offer in the local area of Croydon.
AHF UK COMMEMORATES WORLD AIDS DAY
1 December 2021
We will have our AHF UK testing gazebo outside the CVA, and will be handing out information and condom packs all day
According to the most recent UNAIDS statistics, 38 million people are living with HIV/AIDS worldwide, and in 2020 alone, 1.5 million people became newly infected with HIV. While millions of people today are accessing lifesaving antiretroviral therapy, millions more still desperately need it.
"Europe, just like most of the world, continues battling two pandemics at once. Yet, while one perpetually remains in the spotlight and headlines, ‘AIDS: The Other Pandemic’ continues to be a deadly killer, particularly among our most vulnerable populations, that the world must also never forget," said Zoya Shabarova, Bureau Chief for AHF Europe. "While European and other world leaders must continue battling the novel coronavirus, they must concurrently guarantee that the HIV response has all the resources needed to protect the gains we’ve made over the last three-plus decades. We’ve made great progress, some of which the COVID-19 response could learn from—but there’s still much work left to do."
View the full list of AHF’s U.S. and international World AIDS Day events at AHFwad.org.
About AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF)
AIDS Healthcare Foundation, the largest global AIDS organization, currently provides medical care and/or services to over 1.6 million people in 45 countries worldwide in the US, Africa, Latin America/Caribbean, the Asia/Pacific Region and Europe. To learn more about AHF, please visit our website: www.aidshealth.org, find us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/aidshealth and follow us on Twitter: @aidshealthcare and Instagram: @aidshealthcare.
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UK MEDIA CONTACT:
Michael Mancinelli, UK Country Programme Manager
US MEDIA CONTACT:
Ged Kenslea, Senior Director, Communications, AHF
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Denys Nazarov, Director of Global Policy &