The latest issue of our Newsletter - December 2015 - is out! Follow the link below to get caught up on updates and key developments related to HIV and the law. In this issue you'll find a compilation of recent news articles and stories of implementation of the recommendations of the Global Commission on HIV and the Law, with links to access the full articles on the web.
The United Nations Secretary-General's High-Level Panel on Access to Medicines is inviting contributions for consideration that address the policy incoherence between international human rights law, trade rules and public health objectives regarding the innovation of and access to health technologies. In particular the High-Level Panel will consider contributions that promote research, development, innovation and increase access to medicines, vaccines, diagnostics and related health technologies to improve the health and wellbeing for all, as envisaged by Sustainable Development Goal 3, and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development more broadly.
By Les Ong, Consultant, UNDP Bangkok Regional Hub
Promoting competition within the pharmaceutical market has proven to be an effective strategy in reducing the price and increasing the availability of essential medicines. The introduction of generic medicines led to significant reductions in the price of HIV treatment, which has contributed to the remarkable increase in HIV treatment coverage. In 2000, HIV treatment was priced at US$ 10,000 per patient per year, but competition from generic introduction has reduced prices dramatically. Most recently, UNDP has been able to procure HIV treatments for below US$100 per patient per year.
AIDS continues to be a major global health and development challenge. Since its emergence as one of the most brutal and debilitating diseases in history, it has already claimed the lives of more than 34 million people.
Today, 36.9 million people are living with HIV, with 1.2 million deaths from AIDS-related illnesses and two million new HIV infections occurring in 2014 alone. The devastation wrought by AIDS-related illnesses is very real, especially in sub-Saharan Africa where the majority of new HIV infections occur.
By Ludo Bok, Team leader, Development effectiveness, HIV, Health & Development Group, UNDP
The media has gone crazy over the disclosure of the HIV status of one of America's most controversial television stars, Charlie Sheen. Much of the reporting has been sensationalist, focusing on his multiple marriages and struggles with substance abuse. The majority of it has been dominated by prejudice and moral finger-wagging. Social media went into overdrive, as #Charliesheen trended around the world.
Responses have been mixed, with reactions ranging from admiration for his very public coming out to speculation about how he contracted the virus and the vilification of sex workers. It also sparked discussions around confidentiality, blackmail and the legal implications of not disclosing his HIV status to his ex-partners.