November 2014

Nov 19, 2014


Adolescents living with HIV/AIDS

Dear readers,

This year’s MMS symposium “Not without us!” was dedicated to the health of young people. It has now been twenty years since the International Conference on Population and Development  (ICDP) in Cairo set up new measures and principles concerning sexual and reproductive health.

Even 20 years after Cairo 220 Million women worldwide still do not have access to birth control and even now 25% of girls in southern Africa leave schooling due to unplanned pregnancies. The speakers from Africa, Latin America, Asia and Europe agreed that that there are still too many serious barriers to access to sexual and reproductive health services for youth. Too many young people do not receive sexuality education. Health services do not address the needs of young people which is a reason why they don’t access them. As a consequence teenage pregnancy is common and too many young women experience unsafe and life-threatening abortions.

The lack of sexuality education and the limited access to sexual and reproductive health services are also in the area of HIV/Aids a major problem. Especially young women 15 to 24 years of age have a 50% higher chance to get infected with HIV compared to men the same age. Chandra Mouli (WHO) at the symposium summarized the issue as follows “We cannot continue doing the same and expect change”. There is a high need for strong political leadership and technical consensus, partnership, secure funding and strong management, coupled with persistence and courage to offer young people the necessary access to sexual and reproductive health services.

This newsletter is not only dedicated to young people but also to you – my dear readers! We at want to get to know you better. We want to hear your opinion. user survey is your opportunity to provide suggestions and ideas on the future of

We thank you in advance sincerely to have taken 10 minutes of your time to fill out the questionnaire. Your opinion and suggestions are important to us!

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aidsfocus. ch wish you all the best – the next Newsletter will be issued in January 2015. We will keep you informed also in December about News and Updates on HIV/Aids.

Carine Weiss, MSc, MIH


Project leader Medicus Mundi Schweiz

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Topic of the month

Adolescents living with HIV/Aids

In the light of the Medicus Mundi Switzerland Symposium on adolescent health “not without us!” the topic of this month is dedicated to adolescents living with HIV/Aids.


MMS Symposium, 5 November 2014 in Basel

„Not without us!“ Youth and sexual and reproductive health in international cooperation


Information from the swiss community of practice

Addressing Sexual Violence and HIV

Online-Bulletin of the conference of 10 April 2014. Sexual violence is a fundamental violation of human rights and has a direct impact on the health and wellbeing of people, especially women. Research shows that violence is a major cause of HIV transmission, but also a consequence of HIV infection. The MMS Bulletin explores how sexual and gender based violence increases vulnerability to HIV, AIDS and other STIs.


International News

Young people speak out at UN

UN, October 2014 - Amid the meetings, receptions, and planning sessions held during the opening of the 69th UN General Assembly, sat a panel of five young people passionate about realising the rights of young people all over the world in the post-2015 agenda. The discussion, Leaving no one behind in the post-2015 Development Framework: Responding to the HIV and sexual and reproductive health and rights needs of young marginalized people through community empowerment, was held on September 25th and brought together youth advocates from Latin America, South Asia, and southern Africa.


Partners for Domestic Investment in Health

The Global Fund, 13 October 2014 - To raise the funds needed to achieve transformative impact against AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria and other diseases, partners are coming together in a spirit of shared responsibility. Governments, the private sector, private foundations, individuals and implementing countries can each play a part.


Investing in local production of medicines is a priority

Geneva, 14 October 2014 - If the ambitious but realistic global goal of ending the AIDS epidemic by 2030 is to become a reality, HIV prevention, testing, treatment and counselling services must be scaled up rapidly. A crucial element of this is ensuring sustainable supplies of high-quality diagnostics and medicines in the most affected countries.


“If we do not treat the 35 million people who are already infected, the epidemic will continue.”

Q&A: Françoise Barré-Sinoussi and Luc Montagnier were jointly awarded the 2008 Nobel prize in Physiology or Medicine for their discovery of HIV in 1983. Here, she tells Iria Gomez-Touriño about the latest strategies to combat the virus.


Discussion on HIV focuses on need for adequate response in prisons

UNODC, 16 October 2014 - The global message on tackling HIV and AIDS is clear- no one should be left behind. However, 30 million men and women spend time in prisons every year and are often overlooked in national strategies and global commitments; the time to turn the HIV tide in prison is pressing. Such a response must also include prison staff and should pay special attention to women in prisons.


Emerging epidemic of transmitted HIV drug resistance in low- and middle-income countries, with highest burden seen in MSM - Prevalence of transmitted drug-resistant HIV has doubled in low- and middle-income countries in recent years, results of a meta-analysis published in AIDS show. Between 2004-08 and 2009-13, rates of transmitted resistance increased markedly in all key populations in these settings


Low HIV and Aids rates saw west Africa ‘miss out on health investment’

The Guardian, 29 October 2014 - Ebola-hit region failed to secure substantial foreign aid in earlier epidemic, study says, and was unable to improve health systems.


Ensuring access to generic antiretroviral medicines in low- and middle-income countries

UNAIDS, 29 October 2014 - The recent scale-up of the number of people living with HIV accessing antiretroviral therapy can be linked to the increased availability of generic antiretroviral medicines.


Namibia’s Supreme Court upholds the dignity of women living with HIV

UNAIDS, Geneva, 6 November 2014 - UNAIDS welcomes Namibia’s Supreme Court decision to uphold the Namibian High Court finding that three women living with HIV were subjected to coercive sterilization in public hospitals without their informed consent.


Reports and studies

Fast track: Ending the AIDS epidemic by 2030

UNAIDS, October 2014 - Fast-tracking the AIDS response and setting ambitious targets are critical to ending the AIDS epidemic. This requires transforming the vision of zero new HIV infections, zero discrimination and zero AIDS-related deaths into concrete milestones and endpoints.


AIDS Today: Tell no lies and claim no easy victories

10 October 2014 - AIDS Today: Tell no lies and claim no easy victories is the first edition of our new biennial publication that presents the global state of the civil society response to AIDS. The report aims to spark a timely debate about the global AIDS response: what it has achieved, what it can teach others fighting for health and justice, and what remains to be done to bring about a sustainable end to AIDS.


Global tuberculosis report 2014

WHO - A new report on Tuberculosis (TB) released on 22 October by the World Health Organization shows that 9 million people developed TB in 2013, and 1.5 million died, including 360 000 people who were living with HIV.


How does a ‘human rights based approach’ work out on the ground? Lessons from South Africa - While international rhetoric on HIV and AIDS frequently invokes human rights, putting these ideas into practice in specific settings remains challenging, according to a process evaluation of an intervention in rural South Africa published in the October issue of Culture, Health and Sexuality.


Important news on PrEP - In the last two weeks, two separate studies of Truvada as pre-exposure prohylaxis (PrEP) have found that it is highly effective in reducing the risk of HIV infection for HIV-negative gay men. Both studies have announced their results much earlier than planned, because the evidence of effectiveness came much sooner than had been anticipated.


Advancing HIV prevention science: the roads from Cape Town

The Lancet, November 2014 - At the recent HIV Research for Prevention 2014 (HIV R4P) conference in Cape Town, South Africa (28-31 October), almost 1400 researchers from around the world came together to discuss advances in biobehavioural HIV prevention science. The rationale for this first-time meeting was that investigators need to understand the latest research findings from a wide array of disciplines, if the most promising approaches to HIV prevention can be transformed into sustained, cohesive responses that will arrest the pandemic.



Sustainable healthcare interventions: from blueprint to lasting impact

Basel, 21 November 2014 - At the heart of the Novartis Foundation there has always been a conviction that the projects we are involved in should be as sustainable as possible.


16 ans et parents: quelles réalités Nord-Sud?

Lausanne, 24 novembre 2014 - Chaque année, quelque 16 millions de jeunes femmes de moins de 20 ans accouchent dans le monde (plus de 10% des naissances). Les grossesses précoces accroissent les risques pour la mère comme pour l’enfant, sans parler des conséquences psychosociales. Les complications de la grossesse et de l’accouchement sont la 2e cause de décès pour les jeunes filles âgées de 15 à 19 ans, selon les chiffres de l’OMS.

read more... Annual Meeting 2014

Bern, 27 November 2014 |, the Swiss platform on HIV/AIDS and international cooperation, cordially invites its partners to the annual meeting. It is the first annual meeting for the new coordinator Carine Weiss. I look forward meeting you in person and to discuss with you our activities for 2015!

read more... is a platform set up by the Network Medicus Mundi Switzerland. is sponsored and shaped by its 24 partner organizations who support the aims and activities of the platform through their financial contributions, expertise and commitment. It is financially supported by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC).

Partner organisations: AIDS & Child, CO-OPERAID, Déclaration de Berne, FEPA, Fédération Genevoise de Coopération, Gemeinschaft St. Anna-Schwestern, IAMANEH Switzerland, Kindernothilfe Schweiz, Kwa Wazee, mediCuba-Suisse, missio, mission21, SolidarMed, Swiss Aids Care International, Swiss Aids Federation, Swiss Catholic Lenten Fund, Swiss Catholic Women’s League, Swiss MIVA, Swiss Red Cross, Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (SwissTPH), Tear Fund, Terre des hommes Foundation, terre des hommes schweiz, and World Vision Switzerland.