World Aids Day, 1 December 2003
q Detailed "3 by 5" plan to rapidly expand access to AIDS treatment
1 December 2003 -- On World AIDS Day this year, WHO and UNAIDS unveil an action plan to reach the 3 by 5 target of providing antiretroviral treatment to three million people living with AIDS by the end of 2005. This is a vital step towards the ultimate goal of providing universal access to AIDS treatment to all those who need it.
q New HIV figures underscore urgent need for AIDS treatment.
Statistics released on 25 November 2003 by UNAIDS and WHO highlight the urgent need to improve access to AIDS treatment. "AIDS epidemic update 2003" is issued in advance of World AIDS Day on December 1, when WHO and UNAIDS will reveal details of the global strategy to help three million people get access to AIDS medicines by the end of 2005 - the "3 by 5" initiative. Three million people died of HIV/AIDS this year, making 2003 the most lethal year so far in the history of the epidemic.
For More information, please visit the WHO website www.who.int
q Ministry of Health AIDS/HIV Surveillance Report
Country: Palestine Date of Report: 1/12/2003
Regarding pharmaceutical procurement for the MOH, we would like to prioritize medicines that the MOH would utilize in their primary health care (PHC) clinics, and omit the drugs that are for hospital use alone. This choice falls more in line with EMAP II's goal of addressing the more emergent health care needs facing the Palestinian people. Our reasoning here is that although the MOH still faces shortages in its hospitals, greater needs are faced by the rural health clinics which remain cantonized and isolated. As a result, patients continue to depend more on local health clinics for medications because of their ongoing difficulty with access to hospitals.
2. Are the health facilities that will be targeted by EMAPII the same that were targeted by EMAPI?
We are working on a revision of the previously selected NGO clinics to review the suitability of continuing with each of them, i.e., if they still meet the selection criteria. We anticipate de-selecting about 10 NGO clinics that have currently reduced their needs for procurement support. Since we have the capacity in the field and in the budget to support at least 60 NGO clinics, we would like to consider adding at least another 10 clinics from the NGOs who will soon be completing EMATT funding application. Our criteria will include, among other things, those clinics demonstrating the greatest needs and who are also willing to accept USAID support.
3. What about health information gathering through surveillance, foreseen in EMAPII? During EMAPI, there was a Bi-weekly Health Sector Report: will you use in EMAPII the same methodology and tools for surveillance?
The Bi-weekly Health Sector Reports under EMAPI will be completed for data collected up until September 30, and then discontinued. It has served its use, and will be replaced by efforts to strengthen the MoH’s current system in such a way as to capture, analyze, disseminate, and act upon critical public health information. Emphasis will be placed on improving the quality of data collection and analysis in order to provide information that guides programming, policy decisions, and humanitarian interventions.
EMAP II will continue to maintain ongoing food security and nutritional surveillance (FSANS) by completing phases two and three of the FSANS study, the former in October 2003 and the latter February 2004. This will permit the observation of seasonal trends in food security and consumption with rapid analysis and reporting to stakeholders.
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