Thursday, May 31, 2007

HIV testing and counseling: new guidance

Updates from the UNAIDS Website...
WHO and UNAIDS issued new guidance on informed, voluntary HIV testing and counselling in health facilities on Wednesday 30 May, with a view to increase access to needed HIV treatment, care, support and HIV prevention services. The new guidance focuses on provider-initiated HIV testing and counselling. Read more

Download PICT Guidelines ( en | fr | ru )
Read Press Release ( en | fr | sp | ru | ar )
Read Executive Summary ( en | fr | sp | ru )
More on counselling and testing

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

2007 AIDS Candlelight in the Philippines

The Philippines held its 24th International AIDS Candlelight Memorial (IACM) last Friday, 25 May, 6:00-9:00 pm, at the Unibersidad de Manila, City of Manila.

The IACM is one of the largest and oldest grassroots mobilization campaigns for AIDS awareness in the world. It occurs every year in May and is meant to remember those who have died of AIDS and honour all those who have been affected by it. It is likewise an opportunity to raise community awareness towards decreasing stigma and discrimination related to AIDS, educate people about AIDS, create community dialogues and influence policy makers about prevention, treatment care and support.

This year's commemoration, under the global theme of "Leading the Way to a World Without AIDS", were jointly organized by the Department of Health - NCR, radio station DZMM and the Girls, Women and HIV/AIDS Network (GWHAN).

The program:
I. Invocation - Lunduyan Foundation
II. Welcome remarks - Mayor Lito Atienza (Representative)
III. Acknowledgment of participants and guests - Masters of Ceremony (from DWRR)
IV. Key Message - Sec. Francisco Duque (Representative)
V. Lotus Ceremony (ceremonial unfolding of the AIDS memorial quilts) - Pinoy Plus Association
VI. Inspirational Songs while forming human red ribbon - Arnie and Jeffrey Hidalgo (ABS-CBN artist)
VII. Lighting of candles - Sec. Duque's Representative with affected family member
VIII. Offering of flowers of love - Sec. Duque's Representative with affected family member
IX. Prayer - Parish Priest of Quiapo Church
X. Message from person living with HIV - representative from Babae Plus
XI. Releasing of white balloons - Sec. Duque's Representative



Increased Efforts Needed To Curb Spread of HIV Among Migrant Workers in Asia, Group Says

Source: Global Health Reporting (23 May 2007)

Increased efforts are needed to curb the spread of HIV among migrant workers in Asia, many of whom lack access to health care services, CARAM Asia -- a coalition of migrant and health groups from 15 countries in the region -- said on Monday in an open letter to Asian governments, the AP/International Herald Tribune reports. "For a comprehensive approach to contain HIV/AIDS, the health of not only local populations but also migrant communities needs to be addressed," the letter said. According to CARAM, there are about 53 million migrant workers in Asia who are at an increased risk of HIV because they cannot access HIV prevention programs, health counseling and medical services. Many migrant workers found to be HIV-positive also are deported without any assistance or treatment services, the group said. CARAM did not provide any estimates of how many migrant workers in the region are living with HIV.

According to CARAM, many migrant workers are from impoverished areas in countries such as Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Pakistan and the Philippines and often find employment in more wealthy Asian countries. According to United Nations estimates, about 8.6 million people are living with HIV in Asia. Some officials have said that investment in HIV/AIDS control efforts remains low at 10% of the needed $5 billion annually. The number of people living with HIV in the region could increase to 20 million in the next five years if Asian governments do not increase their commitment to and funding for efforts to curb the spread of the virus, officials have said (AP/International Herald Tribune, 5/22).

The letter is available online.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Job Opening at UNAIDS - Philippines


VACANCY NO.: 2007/03 ALD
DATE ISSUED: 20 May 2007
CLOSING DATE: 1 June 2007

POST TITLE: Partnership and Social Mobilization Programme Officer – UNAIDS, Philippines
TYPE OF APPOINTMENT: Activities of Limited Duration (ALD)

For application procedure, visit:

Saturday, May 26, 2007

When not to use "HIV/AIDS"?

The terms “HIV and AIDS” and “HIV/AIDS” should not be used not simply because of semantics, but n the first instance it implies that there are two completely distinct epidemics.

Below is a short list of preferred terminology as issued by UNAIDS.

Language does matter!!!

Old Use
Preferred Terminology
AIDS unless specifically referring to HIV
HIV/AIDS epidemic AIDS epidemic
HIV/AIDS prevalence HIV prevalence
HIV/AIDS prevention HIV prevention
HIV/AIDS testing HIV testing
People living with HIV/AIDS (PLHA)
People living with HIV (PLHIV)

Download the 2007 UNAIDS Terminology Guidelines here.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Philippine Statement at the UN General Assemby - 21 May 2007

Download here the statement delivered by Ambassador Hilario G. Davide, Jr., Permanent Representative of the Republic of the Philippines to the United Nations during the General Assembly Debate on the Implementation of the Declaration of Commitment on HIV/AIDS last 21 May 2007.

Download statement.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

What is the UNDP - Spain MDG Achievement Fund?

In December 2006, UNDP and the Government of Spain signed a far-reaching agreement to establish a new fund to accelerate efforts to reach the Millennium Development Goals, and to support UN reform efforts at the country level. The Spanish Government has committed €528 million to the MDG Achievement Fund (MDG-F), to be programmed between 2007 and end-2010.

The Fund will operate through the UN development system and finance, typically, collaborative UN activities that leverage the clear value-added of the UN in the sector and country concerned, particularly where the UN’s collective strength is harnessed in order to address multi-dimensional development challenges. 57 countries are eligible to apply for assistance from the Fund.

The MDG-F will intervene in a number of thematic areas, including democratic governance, gender equality and women’s empowerment, basic social services, economic and private sector development, environment and climate change, culture and development and conflict prevention and peace building.

Visit their website to know more about MDG-F.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

UN general assembly meets on AIDS

At the 61st session of the General Assembly on AIDS, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon confirmed his support to the AIDS response promising to ensure that the international community remains united against the epidemic. His remarks were heard by UN Member States as he delivered a statement during the review of the progress made towards universal access to HIV prevention, treatment, care and support.

Read UN Secretary-General's speech ( en | fr )
Read statement by General Assembly's President
Read UNAIDS statement on appointment of new Special Envoy
Read Press Release ( en | fr | ru )
Read Media Advisory (pdf, 92 Kb)
Download UN Secretary-General's progress report (pdf, 240 Kb)

Monday, May 21, 2007

Formula One: Working Together as ONE

Issue in the Spotlight

One of the key principles of the “One UN” vision is inclusiveness. Put differently, “Working together as One” is also about finding more effective ways to help Governments and other partners at country level benefit from the diverse knowledge and technical expertise located throughout the entire UN family. This expertise spans a wide range of subjects and can be found across many different types of UN entities. It represents one of the UN system’s greatest comparative advantages, but also one of its most under-utilized assets.

For this month’s cover story, we have asked two agencies -- with limited physical presence at country level but with large reservoirs of technical knowledge -- to share their views on why they consider “Delivering as an important reform initiative and how they believe they can contribute to its success. And we have invited a Resident Coordinator from one of our pilot countries to tell us why he thinks that non-resident agencies need to play an important role at country level and why this is not always so easy.

Download the entire newsletter here.

The Fiscal Implications of Scaling Up ODA to Deal with the HIV/AIDS Pandemic

Conference Paper # 3

In this IPC-supported Conference Paper, “The Fiscal Implications of Scaling up ODA to Deal with the HIV/AIDS Epidemic”, the author examines whether scaled-up aid can effectively stem the epidemic without inducing macroeconomic disturbances, especially in sub-Saharan Africa, where there is already a high level of aid dependence. The author concludes that although there are such potential dangers, they are manageable and provide no reason for delaying the immediate application of resources on a large scale.

Available online at:

Please see Conference Paper #1 and Conference Paper #2 for related discussions of exchange rates policies and monetary policies. All three papers were commissioned as part of the Global Conference on “Gearing Macroeconomic Policies to Reverse the HIV/AIDS Epidemic”, held last November 2006 in Brasilia and co-sponsored by the HIV/AIDS Group of UNDP and the IPC.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Reducing drug related harm

Updates from the UNAIDS Website...
After 20 years of harm reduction research and programming, many challenging questions remain. The 18th International Conference on the Reduction of Drug Related Harm which opens its doors on Sunday 13 May in Warsaw, Poland will give the 1300 participants the opportunity to present, discuss and debate the often difficult issues surrounding drug related harm.

Visit official conference website

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

South Africa marks key AIDS milestones

Updates from the UNAIDS Website...
The AIDS response in South Africa has been given a boost with the successful endorsement of two key processes: the restructured South African National AIDS Council (SANAC) and a new national AIDS plan which will guide South Africa’s response to AIDS over the next five years.

Read more

Thursday, May 3, 2007

WHO UNAIDS conducts HIV Estimation Workshop in Bangkok

WHO-UNAIDS HIV Estimation Workshop, 18-20 April 2007, Dusit Thani Hotel, Bangkok, Thailand.

The objective of the workshop was to build capacity in English-speaking countries in East Asia and the Pacific to produce estimates of adult HIV prevalence trends, update estimates of people living with HIV, AIDS deaths, new HIV infections and ART treatment need for 2005 and 2007. Participants were updated on changes made to systems such as Workbook, the Estimates and Projection Package (EPP), Spectrum and Trend Analysis. Trainers came from UNAIDS, WHO, UNICEF, the Centers for Disease Control, Family Health International, the World Bank, The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, the Futures Institute and the East-West Center.

The workshop was participated by representatives from nine countries in the Western Pacific Region, UNAIDS Monitoring and Evaluation Advisers, and WHO Country Programme Officers.

There were four representatives from Philippines: Dr. Jessie Fantone (PNAC), Dr. Agnes Benegas (DOH-NEC), Dr. Madeline Salva (WHO), and Mr, Zimmbodilion Mosende (UNAIDS).

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

E-forum gets HIV prevention online

Updates from the UNAIDS Website...
A new electronic discussion forum (e-form) on ‘accelerating HIV prevention’, launched by UNAIDS and partners in southern and eastern Africa, encourages people to get online to debate, share knowledge and build partnerships on HIV prevention issues.

Read more

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

The UN: Delivering as One

Updates from the UNAIDS Website...
UNAIDS’ Deputy Executive Director Deborah Landey was in Brazzaville recently to participate in a meeting on ‘Africa’s agenda in a reforming UN system’. The meeting, convened by the United Nations Development Programme, was held to discuss progress on “Delivering as One” and to take UN Reform forward at country level.

Read more