Countries urged to ensure greater investment for getting HIV targets.

KARACHI -- In a new report, prevailing against pandemics by putting people at the centre, UNAIDS is calling on countries to make far greater investments in global pandemic responses and adopt a new set of bold, ambitious but achievable HIV targets.

If those targets are met, the world will be back on track to ending AIDS as a public health threat by 2030.

The global AIDS response was off track before the COVID-19 pandemic hit, but the rapid spread of the coronavirus has created additional setbacks.

Modelling of the pandemic's long-term impact on the HIV response shows that there could be an estimated 123 000 to 293 000 additional new HIV infections and 69 000 to 148 000 additional AIDS-related deaths between 2020 and 2022.

'The collective failure to invest sufficiently in comprehensive, rights based, people-centred HIV responses has come at a terrible price,' said Winnie Byanyima, Executive Director of UNAIDS.

'Implementing just the most politically palatable programmes will not turn the tide against COVID-19 or end AIDS.

To get the global response back on track will require putting people first and tackling the inequalities on which epidemics thrive.' New targets for getting back on track Although some countries in sub-Saharan Africa, such as Botswana and Eswatini, have done remarkably well and have achieved or even exceeded the targets set for 2020, many more countries are falling way behind.

The high-performing countries have created a path for others to follow.

UNAIDS has worked with its partners to distil those lessons into a set of proposed targets for 2025 that take a people centred approach.

The targets focus on a high coverage of HIV and reproductive and sexual health services together with the removal of punitive laws and policies and on reducing stigma and discrimination.

They put people at the centre, especially the people most at risk and the marginalized-young women and girls, adolescents, sex workers, transgender people, people who inject drugs and gay men and other men who have sex with men.

New HIV service delivery targets aim at achieving a 95% coverage for each sub-population of people living with and at increased risk of HIV.

By taking a person-centred approach and focusing on the hotspots, countries will be better placed to control their epidemics.

The 2025 targets also require ensuring a conducive environment for an effective HIV response and include ambitious antidiscrimination targets so that less than 10% of...

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