AVAC Applauds Secretary Clinton's Call for Science-Based Approach to End AIDS; Urges Agreement on a Global Plan of Action

New AVAC-amfAR Report Lays Out Global Action Agenda for 2012-2015

Monday Night Satellite Session to Examine Next Steps; Features Dr. Tony Fauci and Other AIDS Leaders

WASHINGTON, July 23, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- AVAC today applauded U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and other speakers at the International AIDS Conference for emphasizing the opportunity to achieve an AIDS-free generation, and called for global leaders to agree on a concrete, short-term plan of action to translate this vision into reality. 

"We're all in agreement about the opportunity before us, and it's encouraging that today's speakers began to lay out some of the choices that lie ahead," said Mitchell Warren, executive director of AVAC.  "Now it's time to get specific.  This conference must lead to a concrete, global plan that the AIDS field can use to set priorities, apply our resources, and hold ourselves accountable for progress."

"Our success at ending the AIDS epidemic will depend on whether we follow the science as we work to make new advances available to people in need. If we set priorities based on the best available evidence, we could see a dramatic turnaround in the global epidemic within just a few years.  We're especially encouraged by the announcement of additional U.S. support for linking HIV-positive women to care and treatment, a critical step to achieving the benefits of combination prevention, and the new commitment to voluntary medical male circumcision, one of the most powerful tools to reduce global HIV infections, but one that has too often been overlooked."

Together with amfAR, the Foundation for AIDS Research, AVAC last week issued An Action Agenda to End AIDS.  The report lays out five major short-term priorities for global AIDS programs, together with realistic, annual targets that must be achieved through 2015. The recommended actions, if taken together, could accelerate achievement of a "tipping point" in the global AIDS epidemic, at which — for the first time ever — the number of people gaining access to HIV therapy will outpace the number of people becoming newly infected. 

"One of Secretary Clinton's most compelling points was that we could truly get ahead of the global AIDS epidemic, by getting more people onto live-saving therapy than are becoming newly infected.  Our analysis shows this milestone could be achieved in as little as two or three years – provided we set the right priorities and secure the resources to see them through," Warren said. "Just as important, she, Tony Fauci, Bill Gates and others rightly emphasized the need for continued funding for promising work on the ultimate solutions—an AIDS vaccine and a cure. As we pursue these long-term goals, we must use the tools we have to the maximum impact."

The report and related materials are available at www.EndingAIDS.org.   The new Action Agenda will also be the focus will be the focus of a satellite session at the International AIDS Conference on Monday, July 23 at 6:30pm ET, as well as a press conference on Tuesday, July 24 at 2:00pm ET.