I moderated a debate this morning, one in a series on HIV/AIDS issues sponsored by the World Bank and USAID. This was the topic: “Countries should spend a majority of what is likely to be a flat or even declining HIV prevention budget on ‘treatment as prevention.’” The pro and con sides were each represented by two eminent and articulate medical doctor/scientist/researcher/public health experts.
CGD Policy Blogs
Yesterday, Secretary Clinton made an eloquent and morale boosting speech in support of the United States' continued leadership in the global effort towards an “AIDS-free generation.” Her remarks demonstrated a clear focus on prevention as the way forward, highlighting recent advances in prevention of mother to child transmission (PMTCT), male circumcisio
My guest this week is Mead Over, one of the world’s leading experts on the global response to the HIV/AIDS pandemic. We discuss his new book, Achieving an Aids Transition: Preventing Infections to Sustain Treatment. The key idea is simple but powerful. Mead argues that, instead of reaching vainly for the unsustainable goal of offering treatment to everyone in the developing world who needs it, donor policy should aim to sustain current treatment levels while reducing the number of new infections below the number of AIDS deaths, so that the total number of people with HIV/AIDS declines.
“The escalating number of people infected with HIV/AIDS is far outpacing available funding for treatment, especially in Africa,” Mead tells me. “Only by holding deaths down and preventing new infections will the total number of people with HIV decline and an AIDS transition be reached.”
This is a joint post with Jessica Brinton
At a recent CGD breakfast with Johnny West on his new book Karama! Journeys Through the Arab Spring, our colleague Mead Over asked how women would benefit from the Arab Spring. Though he speaks Arabic and has spent 20 years in the region, West didn’t have much to share about the role and prospects of women. As West explained, he had very few opportunities to interact with women. Unfortunately, this is a piece of a broader reality: even when women have played a huge role in protest movements, they are rarely represented in accounts of the revolution.
Priorities for AIDS Spending: Evaluating Interventions Individually Obscures the Benefits of Synergy
Last Friday I asked “How would you spend an additional $10 billion on AIDS in Africa over the next five years?” On Wednesday I learned how a panel of five distinguished senior economists who had never before worked on the AIDS epidemic would do so. Here’s how they decided to spend the hypothetical additional $10 billion dollars.
(1) commissioning “Assessment Papers” on competing ways to spend a hypothetical additional $10 billion on HIV/AIDS in Africa over five years;
(2) commissioning “Perspective Papers” by discussants who critique the Assessment Papers and suggest alternatives;
This blog was co-authored with Orin Levine, Executive Director, International Vaccine Access Center, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and it will be cross-posted on his Huffington Post blog at www.huffingtonpost.com/dr-orin-levine
In low- and middle-income countries, children living in poverty are much less likely to be vaccinated and more likely to die or become ill from a vaccine-preventable disease than better-off children. An example comes from Nigeria, where less than 5% of children in the lowest quintile of the wealth distribution were fully vaccinated in 2003, as opposed to 40% of children in the wealthiest quintile. (For more on inequalities in health, see here)
What if by taking a pill every day, all 33 million HIV-infected people in the world could not only fend off the deterioration of their own health, but also reduce their chances of infecting uninfected sex partners by 96 %? This is the prospect that is offered by newly announced results of the HPTN 052 trial. (See the Kaiser Foundation report here, the UNAIDS announcement here
Poverty fighters unable to attend yesterday’s Massachusetts Avenue Development Seminar here at CGD (video) missed a lively debate between James Foster and Martin Ravallion on the new Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) developed by Foster and co-authors (available online here). This new approach to measuring poverty, which incorporates the