The Senate Calls on the Federal Government to Increase Funding for HIV as New Infections Increase

The Senate passed a new petition urging the federal government to increase HIV funding to $100 million annually, as new infections continue to rise across the country.

In 2014, Canada committed to implementing three key goals set out by the United Nations Joint Program on HIV AIDS (UNAIDS) to help end the global HIV pandemic.

UNAIDS 90-90-90 program goals state that, by the end of 2020, 90% of all HIV-infected people must know their status, 90% of all people diagnosed with HIV must be treated, and 90% of people being treated have an undetectable viral load.

Despite having promised to adhere to these goals, Canada did not. Public health advocates and senators are calling on the federal government to increase funding for HIV by $ 100 million a year.

Mr. Ron Rosenes, public health advocate and president of the HIV Legal Network, said in an interview with CTV News: “Funds raised to deal with COVID should not affect the source. funding Canada’s HIV response. “This fund has been cut off in the past 13 years.”

In an emailed statement to CTV News, Health Canada reiterated that it spends $ 26.4 million annually through the HIV and Hepatitis C Community Action Fund and an additional $ 7 million annually to the Foundation. harm reduction to help community organizations address HIV, hepatitis C and other blood and sexually transmitted infections.

The department also included a progress report which says that slow progress on the 90-90-90 targets may be related to “the experience of intersecting health challenges such as socio-economic characteristics, health status, emotional aspects such as HIV-related stigma and anxiety, as well as beliefs about HIV and treatment remaining as barriers to accessing and adhering to HIV treatment.”

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