DFID Committed to Integrating HIV and SRH Services

Today, December 1, 2011, is World Aids Day. It has been 30 years since the first case of AIDS was diagnosed, and there are more than 34 million people living with HIV today. Particularly given the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria’s recent announcement that funds have been cut for new programs, the need for resources to support HIV/AIDS services and care is especially pronounced.

A significant sign of progress emerged in today's announcement, by Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for International Development, Stephen O’Brien, that the UK will fund £5m for reproductive health commodities in an effort to further integrate HIV and sexual health services. These funds will help supply at least 13.5 million more female condoms at current prices through the UNFPA’s Global Programme to Enhance Reproductive Commodity Security. It is hoped even more than 13.5 million will be purchased, O’Brien said, noting that the UK’s efforts “…are underpinned by our drive to empower women and girls and ensuring value for money by reducing the costs of treatments and targeting investments based on evidence of what works.”

This announcement is in addition to the £35m in funding the British Department for International Development (DFID) pledged earlier this week at the 2011 International Conference on Family Planning to support family planning programs in developing countries.  The over 1,500 global leaders and advocates at the conference have called for increased integration of care and services in order to maximize positive health outcomes.  

“We’ve made a lot of progress in putting maternal health on the global agenda; now we must call on leaders to put family planning on their to-do list. Every individual deserves this – women, men, and young people,” said Jill Sheffield, President and Founder of Women Deliver.

Read more about DFID’s announcement here.

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