The UN High Level Meeting, to be held in New York City on 8-10 June 2011, aims to review the progress achieved in realizing the 2001 Declaration of Commitment on HIV/AIDS and the 2006 Political Declaration on HIV/AIDS, as well as to promote the continued engagement of leaders in a comprehensive global response to AIDS.
Requests UNAIDS to launch as soon as possible a process of inclusive consultations to consider approaches to strategic investment, including the new investment framework for the global HIV response referenced by the Executive Director in his report, while ensuring the potential applicability and adaptability to national contexts, and overall country ownership. Consultations should be transparent, inclusive and effective, involving governments, national AIDS authorities, civil society, and other relevant stakeholders. Also requests UNAIDS to submit to the Programme Coordinating Board at its 31st meeting a report on the said consultations, and an interim (progress) report to the 30th meeting;
We recognize and welcome UNAIDS and Executive Director’s commitments to work with countries to explore and create an enabling environment for the implementation of Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) flexibilities. However, the Programme Coordinating Board NGO Delegation is very concerned that the supply of generic anti-retrovirals (ARVs), especially the newer, more optimal and forgiving treatment regimens, are under threat because of:
1) The deadline for TRIPS compliance;
2) Countries’ lack of understanding on TRIPS flexibilities and their national legislation barriers to the implementation of TRIPS flexibilities; and
3) TRIPS-plus that is now being imposed through bilateral investment trade agreements or economic partnership agreements.
Our constituencies feel strongly that there must be a compromise, or middle ground, between the rent-seeking behaviour of pharmaceuticals and access to drugs used to treat life-threatening illnesses such as HIV, tuberculosis, and malaria. The life of patents must be shortened, and a fair royalty needs to be determined for the patent holder.
UNAIDS can protect access to medicines and the right to health by promoting anti-competition laws, generating evidence-based assessments of prospective trade agreements.
We welcome the Secretariat’s report on the 2011 United Nations General Assembly High Level Meeting on AIDS and we want to particularly acknowledge the specific inclusion of key populations, including sex workers, men who have sex with men, and people who inject drugs, who were named in the conclusions of the 2011 Political Declaration. However, we want remind the Board that transgender people were notably missing in the Declaration and that no one can be left behind if we are to achieve the zeros in 2015.
While we welcome the report’s call for driving forward innovation to realize the promises of new tools for HIV prevention, including treatment as prevention, microbicides, and low-cost generics, we think that it is important the Secretariat continues to advocate for continued investment for the research and development of new prevention options including an HIV vaccine, female condoms, and more.
The Investment Framework is mentioned on several occasions throughout the document. And while we support the principles that are at the foundation of the framework (i.e., targeting resources to key populations, supporting evidence-based interventions, and keeping a focus on critical enablers including the social determinants of HIV), we would like to point out that the framework requires refinement, specifically, as related to the assumptions made regarding funding levels to key populations built into the model.
Zuzanna Muskat-Gorska, Global Trade Union HIV/AIDS Coordinator at the International Trade Union Confederation, focuses on social protection’s role in HIV responses in her statement to the “Follow up to the 2011 UN General Assembly High Level Meeting on AIDS”.
Dr. Amira Herdoiza, UNAIDS PCB NGO Delegate for Latin America & the Caribbean, joined during the 28th UNAIDS Board meeting a panel of speakers on the outcomes of the UN General Assembly High Level Meeting and the 2011 Political Declaration approved in June in New York. Below is her speech. (download in pdf format)
Decides that the United Nations General Assembly Political Declaration on HIV/AIDS: Intensifying our Efforts to Eliminate HIV/AIDS adopted by Heads of State and Governments on 10 June 2011 serves as a key reference to implement the Unified Budget, Results and Accountability Framework