www.aidsactioneurope.org hivaidsclearinghouse.eu No 4, September 2014 Russia flag
In this edition:
 News from AIDS Action Europe
20th International AIDS Conference
The International AIDS Conference took place this year in Melbourne, Australia from July, 20 to 25 . 

The conference started with a minute of silence for those who passed away in the crash of flight MH17. Despite this tragedy more than 12.000 delegates from 200 countries continued to exchange information and news around HIV/AIDS.

AIDS Action Europe Steering Committee member Brian West attended the conference which in his opinion was a great opportunity for the community to make its voice heard. There were interesting sessions regarding groups affected by HIV – in particular with focus on indigenous populations.

“The Global Village had a European Networking Zone. It was a great opportunity for community groups and NGO service providers to meet and share their experiences. The Zone had sessions on Criminalisation, PrEP and TasP. There were also great lively sessions on Deportation and maltreatment of HIV positive migrant workers and the impact of the economic crisis on HIV response in southern EU member states. And we were surrounded there by all these other great community groups and networks!”

Brian, what did you learn/what was new?
“Not much new science – although the WHO stepping up the support for PrEP was very interesting. The new drugs coming through for Hepatitis C are very exciting – they seem to have excellent cure rates, and could really benefit people co-infected with HIV and Hep C – since the cure rates in the co-infected population are as good as they are in mono-infected. The cost of some of the new drugs looks outrageous though. Unaffordable for all but the richest at those prices... Several community groups took part in
demonstrations against these prices.”
On Thursday 24th in the Global Village AAE hold a meeting: “AIDS Action Europe: challenges, changes and perspectives” where representative of the new host organisation Ludger Schmidt discussed with members and other interested stakeholders past network activities and collected expectations and request for the future.  
 EU HIV/AIDS Civil Society Meeting XIX

The HIV/AIDS Civil Society Forum (CSF) has been established by the European Commission (the Commission) as a working group to facilitate the participation of NGOs, including those representing people living with HIV and AIDS, in policy development and implementation and in information exchange activities. Below is a short overview of the meeting (Luxembourg, 8-9 July 2014). The full meeting report and all presentations are available for download at http://www.aidsactioneurope.org.

Policy Framework onwards

EC reported on main activities since last meeting.  Among the many: a)  the process for the renewal of the HIV/AIDS Civil Society Forum members was started and successfully brought to conclusion. The opening of the 19th CSF meeting was dedicated to welcome the members and remind them about the rights and duties of their role; b) the Action Plan was prolonged till the end of 2016. The updated Plan contains most of the suggestions made by CSF members; c) an external evaluation of the past EU Communication “Combating HIV/AIDS in the European Union and neighbouring countries, 2009 -2013” was performed and results should be published in August 2014. The timeframe of the new policy framework will be discussed with the new Commissioner; d) the Commission developed tools to support Member States in the use of structural funds.

CSF members agreed on a number of very relevant and urgent issues to be included in the discussions during the November High Level Meeting in Rome and in the Rome declaration.  Among the many:  affordability for HIV, HCV and TB treatments (increased use of generics, joint procurement agreements, compulsory licensing…); universal access to prevention, testing, treatment and care for all key populations in the region; to end the AIDS epidemic among people who inject drugs in Europe; to set goals around decriminalisation of sexual transmission and risk behaviours (same-sex sex, drug injecting, sex work, migrant status…)

Funding mechanisms for the region – the new Public Health Programme

New funding opportunities were presented with the introduction and discussion of the 2014 new calls for proposal: grants for projects, operating grants, joint actions and tenders. The calls for proposals for projects and operating grants are now open; deadline for submission is September 25, 2014. Starting with this round, applications need to be submitted electronically; dedicated Help Desks are available to support the application process.  All the details are available on the Chafea website and in the presentation uploaded on AAE website.

Improved collaboration with the Civil Society Forum on Drugs

The meeting hosted presentations by the Chair of the CSF on Drugs and of the Correlation Network, with updates on their work and information on hepatitis C.  More and better synergies of the HIV and HCV sectors in regards to advocacy efforts were agreed on for the near future. The first goal set was a joint call addressed to governments and pharma industries for price reduction of the new hepatitis C treatments, to be issued in occasion of the World Hepatitis Day (July 28th).
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New Executive Coordinator AAE
Since August 1st, 2014 Michael Krone is working for AAE as Executive Coordinator. 

“I have been working in the Public Health field for almost 16 years now, mainly in prevention of infectious diseases. The gay counselling centre of Berlin and Deutsche AIDS-Hilfe  e.V. were my first employers and I was involved in fundraising, project development and management. I started working on international level in 2005, coordinating a European Social Fund (ESF) financed programme for the integration of PLWH into labour force for Deutsche AIDS-Hilfe until 2007. After that, I got more and more involved in the coordination and implementation of projects in Central and Eastern Europe, which eventually led to an employment in Kyiv/Ukraine where I lived and worked for almost four years till October 2013. I worked as an integrated expert for the Ukrainian organisation “Ruch sa sdorov’ja” (Movement for Health) in the framework of German development cooperation. Our main activities were dedicated to prevention and treatment of hepatitis C and we implemented a project on Pandemic Preparedness in close cooperation with the Ukrainian Ministry of Health. Furthermore, during this period of time, I was appointed focal point for the Eastern European and Central Asian region of the BACKUP programme of German Society for International Cooperation (GIZ) supporting project implementations of the GFATM”. 

Now Michael is back in Berlin and was chosen by Deutsche AIDS-Hilfe as new host organisation of AIDS Action Europe for the Executive Officer position. We hope that his experience and knowledge will contribute to our work which is so important and very much needed.

Welcome on board, Michael! 

AIDS Action Europe office  

Deutsche AIDS-Hilfe     

Wilhelmstr 138                                                                                   email:   office@aidsactioneurope.org   
10963 Berlin                                                                                        phone: +49 (0)30 69 00 87-0
Germany                                                                                               fax:        +49 (0)30 69 00 87-42
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AIDS Action Europe brings together civil society to work towards a more effective response to
the HIV epidemic
in Europe and Central Asia.

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