News / Health

AIDS Experts Gather in Vienna

The 18th International AIDS conference is underway in Vienna with the announcement of a new U.N. initiative that aims to simplify the way HIV treatment is provided so it can reach more people. AIDS activists and supporters gathered in the Austrian capital to celebrate on the eve of the meeting.

In the shadow of Vienna's Gothic City Hall, musicians, singers and dancers opened one of Europe's premier charity events for AIDS, the Life Ball. Former U.S. President Bill Clinton and German tennis star Boris Becker were among the celebrities that turned out to help raise more than a million dollars for fighting AIDS.

Guests wore costumes that were both creative and outrageous, reflecting the event's theme of "Earth". Some people were completely naked except for body paint, while others were dressed as wood nymphs and fairies, festooning their hair with leaves and vines. Later, after a strong thunderstorm cut the concert short, they danced the night away inside the lavish City Hall and an historic theater.

But after Saturday's party, the real work that has drawn some 20,000 AIDS activists and experts to Vienna began.

Nearly 30 years into the AIDS epidemic, scientists and experts are still searching for a cure and a vaccine for the HIV virus, which causes AIDS. Until those are found, treatment and prevention of HIV remain the best weapons in combatting the virus and are center stage at this conference.

UNAIDS Executive Director Michele Sidibe launched a new initiative called Treatment 2.0, which aims to simplify the way HIV treatment is provided and to scale up access to life saving medicines by bringing treatment costs down and making drug regimens simpler. He said it is important, in part, because in some countries people are losing hope.

"To bring this hope back, we need to simplify treatment, we need to have drugs that can be administered easily, we need to make it owned by communities, we need to make sure that we can have diagnostics that are not costly," he said.

Conference Chairman and International AIDS Society President Julio Montaner said Treatment 2.0 is important because studies have shown that as treatment coverage expands, new infections go down.

"So this is the way forward. Until we have a cure, until we have a vaccine, it could be decades from now, we have a way with Treatment 2.0 to revolutionize the way we approach HIV," said Montaner.

UNAIDS says that compared with current treatment approaches, this new initiative could avert an additional 10 million deaths by 2025.

Delegates this week will also hear about scientific advances in the prevention of HIV infections and discuss protecting the human rights of people who have the virus.

You May Like

EU Court Fines Poland for Hosting CIA 'Black Sites'

Ruling is first time a court has acknowledged suspects were held and tortured at the sites, under US program launched following the 9/11 terrorist attacks More

Migrant Issues Close to Home Spur Groups to Take Action

Groups placing water, food in the desert, or aiding detainees after release, have one common goal: no more deaths of migrants crossing illegally into the US More

Video At AIDS Conference, Prevention Pill Stirs Excitement

Truveda shows promise, spurring debate over access and other approaches More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debatei
X
Shelley Schlender
July 24, 2014 6:43 PM
In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video Death Toll From Israel-Gaza Conflict Surpasses 700

Gaza officials say a shelling hit a compound housing a United Nations-run school in the Gaza Strip, killing more than a dozen people, during an Israeli offensive in the area. Heavy fighting between the Israeli military and Hamas militants continued on Thursday, pushing up the death toll. So far, more than 730 Palestinians and 35 Israelis have been killed in the conflict. VOA's Scott Bobb has the latest from Jerusalem.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video Israel Targets Gaza Supply Tunnels

The Israeli military has launched a ground operation in Gaza to destroy the myriad tunnels that may have been used to smuggle weapons to Hamas. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports that could mean more hardship for the people of Gaza, who obtain some of their essential supplies through these underground passages
Video

Video Researchers Target Low-Cost Avatar Technology

Scientists at the University of Southern California Institute for Creative Technologies say 3-dimensional representations could revolutionize social media. Elizabeth Lee has more from Los Angeles.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.

AppleAndroid