The EU should be more concerned about the fast-growing HIV/AIDS epidemic in eastern Europe, says the executive director of the International HIV/AIDS Alliance, who also warns about 'its very dangerous combination' with drug-resistant tuberculosis in those countries.
Europe's strategy to combat HIV/AIDS in its neighbouring countries is mere words on paper and EU investment being put behind the response to HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis in these countries is far from being enough, argues the executive director of the International HIV/AIDS Alliance.
The EU-27 health ministers have signalled their intention to negotiate with the pharmaceutical industry on access to anti-retroviral treatments at accessible prices, highlighting the need for solidarity with poorer nations.
The number of reported HIV cases in member states has doubled since 1998 and half of the new cases affect people aged 15-25. A Commission campaign aims to remind young people that HIV/AIDS is still prevalent.
The latest Eurobarometer on HIV/AIDS has shown that although levels of awareness regarding the epidemic are generally high, citizens from new member states are most likely to be misinformed on the issue.
A 2004 survey of business executives reveals that around
three-quarters of companies have no HIV/AIDS policy. Only in
countries where HIV prevalence hits the 20% mark do the
majority of companies establish policies.