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38th UNAIDS PCB Meeting, Geneva

NGO Statement: UNAIDS ED Report

This statement is made on behalf of Stop Aids Alliance and the Interagency Coalition on Aids and Development (ICAD)

We want to highlight two main issues in relation to the HLM, and ask UNAIDS and Member States for their leadership:

Whereas the Political Declaration includes strong commitment to the 90-90-90 strategy, access to treatment and financing issues among others, this must be accompanied with a strong commitment to KP, human rights and combination prevention programs in all countries, including MICs, as the only way to ending Aids by 2030. Many donors are withdrawing their financial support to MICs, often without appropriate plans for responsible and sustainable transition, and ignore the many reasons why MICs are not in a position to quickly take on the responsibility for their health systems and to meet the needs of their populations through continued service delivery. Key populations and human rights programs, which are often funded by external donors, now are needed to discontinue their service provision as donors withdraw from MICs. In order to prevent increases in new cases of HIV and to sustain progress made on HIV, there is an urgent need for sustainable transition plans and principles to help avoid gaps in the HIV response and ensure HIV service delivery for the poorest and most marginalized wherever they are. Technical agencies and donors, together with recipient countries, must develop guidelines on the content and process for ensuring sustainable transitions that can be implemented throughout the life of a grant. Predictable funding, long-terms plans, and ensuring formal systems support community system strengthening and human rights are essential for responsible transitions.

Our second key point is related to the UHC debate; as this is an opportunity to ensure integration and sustainability of HIV responses. But UHC programs should not just deal with financial measures, they must address all of the barriers to effective service coverage and build on the lessons learned of the HIV response. Whereas many countries are moving towards UHC, certain groups of the population might still be excluded, particularly key affected populations and other marginalized groups. Investment in and support of the community response to reach certain groups and the promotion of human rights should be  a critical component of UHC policies and programs if UHC is to be truly realized. The UHC and HIV movements could provide an inclusive and equitable model for coordinated action in the next era of global health. The HIV movement has a significant body of evidence demonstrating the critical role of and the need to invest in community systems alongside public health systems. But also the engagement of UNAIDS and the HIV sector in this debate is a way to ensure that UHC packages include the entire range of HIV services, including HIV prevention, treatment, care, harm reduction and human rights programming.

Finally, we thank M Sidibé for his Report and acknowledge all efforts made by the co- facilitators and those member states that wanted to see a strong political declaration that is committed with and that include fully funded targets of the UNAIDS Strategy.

Thank you.