Global partners for HIV programming yesterday launched a US$1.2 billion funding aimed at scaling up diagnosis and treatment of HIV infection among men.
The project called MenStar Coalition, was launched at the ongoing International Conference in Amsterdam and announced by Sir Elton John and the Duke of Sussex.
Speaking at the launch of the program Sir Elton John said, “I am so proud to be helping to launch a major new coalition in the fight against AIDS,
“My Foundation has always believed in partnership as the best way to find solutions, share learning and optimize what is working. It’s time for men to really, fully become part of the fight against AIDS, MenStar is going to help them do that,” he said.
Recent data from the UNAIDS 2018 report released last week revealed that reaching more men with HIV testing and treatment is critical to breaking cycles of HIV transmission and reducing HIV incidence among young women.
High burdened countries have also shown that men access HIV testing and treatment at low rates, endangering their own health and also expanding the spread of HIV among adolescent girls and young women.
U.S Global AIDS Coordinator and Representative for the global health diplomacy, Ambassador Deborah Birx said PEPFAR will invest over $800 million in the next year to advance the goals of the MenStar Coalition.
““PEPFAR will invest over $800 million in the next year to advance the goals of the MenStar Coalition. Through our efforts, we aim to provide HIV treatment to an additional 1 million men and support over 90% of men in this age group to be virally suppressed to effectively interrupt HIV transmission.” she said.
MenStar will expand the diagnosis and treatment of HIV infections in men keys to breaking the cycle of HIV transmission and ultimately ending the AIDS epidemic as a public health threat by 2030, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa.
MenStar Coalition brings together the Elton John AIDS Foundation, the U.S. Partners include the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), Unitaid, the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, the Children’s Investment Fund Foundation (CIFF), Johnson & Johnson, and Gilead Sciences.