In 2020, the world’s attention has been focused by the COVID-19 pandemic on health and how pandemics affect lives and livelihoods. COVID-19 is showing once again how health is interlinked with other critical issues, such as reducing inequality, human rights, gender equality, social protection, and economic growth.
With this in mind, the theme of World AIDS Day this year is “Global solidarity, shared responsibility”.
This requires us to view global health responses, including the AIDS response, in a new way. It requires the world to come together to ensure that:
Health is fully financed
Governments must come together and find new ways to ensure that health care is fully funded. No one country can do it alone. Domestic and international funding for health must be increased.
Health systems are strengthened
Investments in the AIDS response in the past few decades have helped to strengthen health systems and have been supporting the COVID-19 response. But more needs to be done to further strengthen health systems and protect health-care workers.
Access is ensured
Life-saving medicines, vaccines and diagnostics must be considered as public goods. There must be global solidarity and shared responsibility to ensure that no individual, community or country is left behind in accessing life-saving health commodities.
Human rights are respected
A human rights approach applied everywhere will produce sustainable results for health. The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed the fault lines in society and how key populations have been left behind in many parts of the world.
Now is the moment for bold leadership for equal societies, the right to health for all and a robust and equitable global recovery. This World AIDS Day join us in calling on countries to step up their efforts to achieve healthier societies. This World AIDS Day let us demand global solidarity and shared responsibility.
In East Africa, Mildmay works with over 100,000 of the most vulnerable and hard-to-reach people living with and affected by HIV and other related health issues. This includes children and their families, vulnerable children and orphans and other vulnerable groups.
Mildmay trains many ordinary people to provide basic healthcare and social support for people living with HIV in their communities. This enables those in the remotest regions to receive the care they need.
Our programme of education includes the training of community healthcare workers, senior government officials, prison wardens and drug rehabilitation teams.