Roadmap for faith-based organizations to expand access to HIV treatment
Churches and other faith-based organizations are the largest single group providing health care services for HIV—contributing up to 50% of facility-based and community care in some countries.
In order to develop a roadmap to increase faith-based groups’ work in providing life-saving HIV treatment, Caritas Internationalis and UNAIDS co-organized a consultation from 25-26 February in Rome.
Progress made to date; the end of the AIDS epidemic may be possible by ensuring both the dignity of the person and access to services for all; and the commitment and urgency to act were common themes throughout the meeting.
Specific issues discussed in the meeting included:
The significant role of the faith community both in delivering services and in ensuring the dignity of the person,
Collecting and presenting data that demonstrates impact of the work of the faith based community
The need to increase financial investment in HIV treatment services
Accelerating work to close the gap in testing and treatment for children
Including faith-based organizations in national platforms at country level
Ensuring coordination––not duplication––of services in areas supported by multiple donors
Participants included representatives from Christian faith traditions, UN organizations, Vatican offices, governments, donors, the medical and scientific community, and the diplomatic corps accredited to the Holy See.
The Consultation was supported by UNAIDS, Caritas Internationalis, UNITAID, the United States Embassy to the Holy See and CUAMM- Doctors for Africa. Cosponsors included the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria, Catholic Relief Services, and the Ecumenical Advocacy Alliance.