Ministers invite media and business to join HIV/AIDS fight

Health ministers from Europe and neighbouring countries have invited the private sector, in particular the media, employers and pharmaceutical industry, to contribute to the fight against HIV/AIDS.

A two-day ministerial conference on fighting HIV/AIDS was closed by a joint declaration by member states’ representatives, neighbouring countries and international partners on their commitment to fight the epidemic together at the global level, particularly in Africa.

The Bremen Declaration on ‘Responsibility and Partnership – Together Against HIV/AIDS’ states: “We have the know-how to halt and reverse the spread of the epidemic, and that this involves an integrated and co-ordinated focus on HIV/AIDS prevention, treatment, care and support, based on the promotion of the human rights both of people living with HIV and affected communities.” 

The declaration also highlights the need for more research into vaccines. “HIV/AIDS continues to be a fatal disease. This is why we need excellent research efforts that are networked with each other and which co-operate with partners in areas that are most seriously affected,” said German Education and Research Minister Annette Schavan.

The declaration invites the Commission to engage in twinning projects with civil society representatives to transfer experience and enhance co-operation. The private sector, in particular the media, employers and pharmaceutical industry are invited to contribute to raising the awareness of the risks of HIV/AIDS, to provide access to prevention and to facilitate access to affordable treatment.

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