News / Africa

    AIDS Activist Group Calls for Greater Global Fund Support

    Multimedia

    Audio
    Joe DeCapua

    Next week, donor nations meet in New York to decide how much money to give the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.  Activists and NGOs say the fund needs at least $20 billion to sustain current programs and provide new grants.  However, there are indications donors will contribute a lot less than that in the last funding round.

    Vuyiseka Dubula, general secretary of South Africa’s Treatment Action Campaign (TAC), has concerns about donor funding levels.

    “Our main concerns are the signs that we see from the G8 countries,” she says, “showing [much] less commitment to universal access.  And we measure that by their commitment to increase their expenditure on health and HIV.”

    10 million people in need

    In 2005, at the G8 summit in Gleneagles, Scotland, leaders pledged to achieve universal access to HIV/AIDS treatment, care and prevention by 2015.

    “We’ve been calling on the G8 countries, including the U.S., Germany, the U.K., Italy, Japan and so on, to replenish the Global Fund when the replenishment conference comes up this year,” she says.

    Few countries have officially announced their funding amounts prior to next week’s meeting. There are that indications Italy, for example, may pledge a small amount or nothing at all.

    Vuyiseka Dubula, General Secretary, Treatment Action Campaign, South Africa
    Vuyiseka Dubula, General Secretary, Treatment Action Campaign, South Africa

    “Many countries are now ‘pledge funding’ HIV programs, meaning that there will not be an increase from now up to 2015.  And that has an impact on people who are supposed to be getting access to treatment.  Because by now we should be at 10 million people who should be on treatment this year.  And so far, we have about 7.7 million people who are on treatment,” she says.

    Missing out

    There has been a growing number of reports in Africa this year that people are being turned away from HIV/AIDS treatment programs due to funding shortfalls.

    While South Africa does get money from the Global Fund, most HIV-related programs are funded by the government.  It’s a different story for South Africa’s neighbors.  Dubula says countries such as Lesotho, Swaziland, Zimbabwe and Congo depend on external funding for most their HIV-related programs.  “Obviously,” she says, “they have had to turn people away.”

    “If you pull the plug on the Global Fund,” she says, “then those countries will not be able to treat their own people.  And many people waiting to be started on treatment will wait forever and die, because the ultimate result of no treatment is death.”

    Residents of neighboring countries could go to South Africa in hopes of receiving treatment no longer available at home.  “There is no one who lives with HIV who wants to live without their drugs,” she says.

    South Africa

    Dubula says South Africa has “the biggest HIV program in the world” with over a million people on treatment.

    “Our biggest challenge is sustainability of that program as we go forward -- both human resource capacity and financial resource capacity -- to scale up services to meet 80 percent of people who should be getting access to treatment.”

    The South Africa government uses “creative” ways to use its money effectively, she says, adding, “To use that money effectively we need an HIV program that is run efficiently, meaning that the money we are spending can save as many lives as possible, rather than spending too much money using the most expensive model of care.”

    Still, South Africa would feel the effects of smaller donations to the Global Fund, even though the grants it receives are much smaller than other countries that “depend solely” on the fund.

    “It will affect us,’ she says, “It means we won’t reach our target.  Many people that we thought we were going to put on treatment will not go on treatment.”

    You May Like

    Video For Many US Veterans, the Vietnam War Continues

    More than 40 years after it ended, war in Vietnam and America’s role in it continue to provoke bitter debate, especially among those who fought in it

    Video Newest US Citizens, Writing the Next Great Chapter

    100 immigrants graduated Friday as US citizens in New York, joining the ranks of 680,000 others every year in cities across country

    Family's Fight Pays Off With Arlington Cemetery Burial Rights for WASPs

    Policy that allowed the Women Airforce Service Pilots veterans to receive burial rites at Arlington had been revoked in 2015

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

    By the Numbers

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Vietnamese-American Youth Optimistic About Obama's Visit to Vietnami
    X
    Elizabeth Lee
    May 22, 2016 6:04 AM
    U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Vietnam later this month comes at a time when Vietnam is seeking stronger ties with the United States. Many Vietnamese Americans, especially the younger generation, are optimistic Obama’s trip will help further reconciliation between the two former foes. Elizabeth Lee has more from the community called "Little Saigon" located south of Los Angeles.
    Video

    Video Vietnamese-American Youth Optimistic About Obama's Visit to Vietnam

    U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Vietnam later this month comes at a time when Vietnam is seeking stronger ties with the United States. Many Vietnamese Americans, especially the younger generation, are optimistic Obama’s trip will help further reconciliation between the two former foes. Elizabeth Lee has more from the community called "Little Saigon" located south of Los Angeles.
    Video

    Video First-generation, Afghan-American Student Sets Sights on Basketball Glory

    Their parents are immigrants to the United States. They are kids who live between two worlds -- their parents' homeland and the U.S. For many of them, they feel most "American" at school. It can be tricky balancing both worlds. In this report, produced by Beth Mendelson, Arash Arabasadi tells us about one Afghan-American student who seems to be coping -- one shot at a time.
    Video

    Video Newest US Citizens, Writing the Next Great Chapter

    While universities across the United States honor their newest graduates this Friday, many immigrants in downtown Manhattan are celebrating, too. One hundred of them, representing 31 countries across four continents, graduated as U.S. citizens, joining the ranks of 680,000 others every year in New York and cities around the country.
    Video

    Video Vietnam Sees Strong Economic Growth Despite Incomplete Reforms

    Vietnam has transformed its communist economy to become one of the world's fastest-growing nations. While the reforms are incomplete, multinational corporations see a profitable future in Vietnam and have made major investments -- as VOA's Jim Randle reports.
    Video

    Video Qatar Denies World Cup Corruption

    The head of Qatar’s organizing committee for the 2022 World Cup insists his country's bid to host the soccer tournament was completely clean, despite the corruption scandals that have rocked the sport’s governing body, FIFA. Hassan Al-Thawadi also said new laws would offer protection to migrants working on World Cup construction projects. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
    Video

    Video Infrastructure Funding Puts Cambodia on Front Line of International Politics

    When leaders of the world’s seven most developed economies meet in Japan next week, demands for infrastructure investment world wide will be high on the agenda. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s push for “quality infrastructure investment” throughout Asia has been widely viewed as a counter to the rise of Chinese investment flooding into region.
    Video

    Video Democrats Fear Party Unity a Casualty in Clinton-Sanders Battle

    Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton claimed a narrow victory in Tuesday's Kentucky primary even as rival Bernie Sanders won in Oregon. Tensions between the two campaigns are rising, prompting fears that the party will have a difficult time unifying to face the presumptive Republican nominee, Donald Trump. VOA national correspondent Jim Malone has more from Washington.
    Video

    Video Portrait of a Transgender Marriage: Husband and Wife Navigate New Roles

    As controversy continues in North Carolina over the use of public bathrooms by transgender individuals, personal struggles with gender identity that were once secret are now coming to light. VOA’s Tina Trinh explored the ramifications for one couple as part of trans.formation, a series of stories on transgender issues.
    Video

    Video Amerikan Hero Flips Stereotype of Middle Eastern Character

    An Iranian American comedian is hoping to connect with American audiences through a film that inverts some of Hollywood's stereotypes about Middle Eastern characters. Sama Dizayee reports.
    Video

    Video Budding Young Inventors Tackle City's Problems with 3-D Printing

    Every city has problems, and local officials and politicians are often frustrated by their inability to solve them. But surprising solutions can come from unexpected places. Students in Baltimore. Maryland, took up the challenge to solve problems they identified in their city, and came up with projects and products to make a difference. VOA's June Soh has more on a digital fabrication competition primarily focused on 3-D design and printing. Carol Pearson narrates.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora