December 1st is World AIDS Day. On behalf of the United States embassy in Madagascar, I want to highlight the many successes the world has seen in preventing HIV and treating those who are living with it.
The fight against HIV demonstrates what we can do when we work together to put our efforts, our science, and data to a challenge.
The United States is the largest contributor to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria.
Between 2001 and 2023, annual U.S. contributions to the Global Fund have totaled almost $25 billion. Currently, the U.S. government provides more than 20 million people with life-saving HIV treatment.
In addition to helping to control malaria and tuberculosis, the Global Fund supports Madagascar’s Ministry of Public Health to test, treat and prevent new HIV infections among the nation’s most vulnerable and affected communities.
But, significant challenges remain, including here in Madagascar. Over the last 10 years, cases of HIV in Madagascar have increased by nearly 240 percent, and deaths related to HIV and AIDS have risen a dramatic 423 percent.
Each of these statistics translates into a person, family, or a community. We must work together to keep everyone affected by HIV at the center of our common fight to eradicate this disease from our world.
Our efforts as governments and partners to create equity, effectiveness, and sustainability in HIV programs rely on listening to the voices of communities, especially those that are marginalized and stigmatized.
I hope that on this year’s World AIDS Day, you will take a moment to remember the many lives that have been lost to HIV and those who are affected today.