aidsfocus news

aidsfocus news
November 2015

Nov 27, 2015


World AIDS Day 2015 in Basel – Fighting the Stigma

Dear aidsfocus readers

Like every year since 1988, World AIDS Day is taking place on 1 December to remember all HIV positive people and to commemorate all victims of AIDS, as well as drawing attention to a disease which is still a long way from being contained. Even today, more than 35 million people are living with HIV and only 15 million of them have access to treatment and medication.

The focus of this year’s World AIDS Day is “Getting to Zero” – zero new HIV infections, zero discrimination and zero deaths from AIDS.

Even today, stigmatisation and discrimination are amongst the main obstacles to ensuring access to HIV treatment, care and prevention for everyone. People with HIV have to stand up for their rights in order to fight stigmatisation and discrimination in their societies. Because, without their commitment to educating their fellow human beings about HIV, it will be difficult to allay the fears and anxieties in their social environments.

This is precisely what Melania Mrema Kyando, an HIV positive pastor from Tanzania, has done in her community. With great courage and warm-heartedness, she set about educating her society about HIV and founding a self-help group to fight stigmatisation and discrimination of HIV positive people. And she has succeeded: an increasing number of people are now undergoing the test and are willing to take medication.

On 1 December at 6.30 pm, Mission 21 invites you to the film premiere of “JUST LIKE YOU – WIE DU UND ICH“ at the Stadtkino Basel. The film documents the story of Melania Mrema Kyando and her self-help group in Tanzania. Following the screening, Pastor Melania Mrema Kyando (Rungwe/ Tanzania) and director Nicholas Calvin (Dar es Salaam/Tanzania) will talk about their work and film project. The evening’s screening is being presented by Mission 21.

We are looking forward to welcoming you to the Stadtkino Basel on World AIDS Day!

Carine Weiss


Project Leader, Medicus Mundi Switzerland

Topic of the month

World AIDS Day in Basel – Fighting the Stigma

1 December 2015 - Even now, in 2015, being diagnosed with HIV brings a stigma for those who are affected and there is a great fear of discrimination. That it does not always have to be this way is demonstrated in a film from Tanzania premiering in Basel on World AIDS Day on 1 December 2015: “JUST LIKE YOU – WIE DU UND ICH”. The film portrays an HIV-positive female pastor who, together with a large self-help group, has successfully broken her society’s silence concerning HIV/AIDS.


International news

UNAIDS Executive Director delivers his World AIDS Day 2015 message

UNAIDS - "The world has committed to end the AIDS epidemic by 2030 as part of the Sustainable Development Goals. This ambitious yet wholly attainable objective represents an unparalleled opportunity to change the course of history for ever—something our generation must do for the generations to come.


Campaign highlights patients’ right: “Be Healthy — Know your viral load”

Science Speaks - “On 30 October 2015 a new campaign calls on African governments to make viral load tests routinely available to all citizens living with HIV.


Ending the epidemics is a greater challenge than achieving progress: Dybul - "Executive Director Mark Dybul challenges the Global Fund to do better. He provided the Board with a report that celebrated the Global Fund’s achievements but also challenged the Fund to do better on a number of fronts.


SDG Series: Are SDGs the Vehicle to End AIDS by 2030? Only if Driven by Human Rights

Health and Human Rights Journal - "SDG 3, the overarching goal on health issues, seeks to ensure healthy lives and promote wellbeing for all at all ages. Target 3.3 is, “By 2030, end the epidemics of AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria and neglected tropical diseases and combat hepatitis, water-borne diseases and other communicable diseases”. There are several other goals and targets in the proposed SDGs that are relevant to ending AIDS by 2030; these include goals 1-5, 8, 10, 11, 16 and 17. It is therefore useful to look at the SDGs as whole to assess how they might impact issues of HIV. (by Allan Maleche)


More research on the impact of starting treatment early - As HIV Update has previously reported, the results of a groundbreaking study which demonstrated the benefits of starting HIV treatment early were released in the summer. The headline findings are clear and have already led to changes in treatment guidelines. All international guidelines now recommend that treatment is started as soon as people are diagnosed with HIV.


Towards a people-centered approach to the world drug problem

UNAIDS - "Ahead of the United Nations General Assembly Special Session (UNGASS) on the World Drug Problem that will take place in New York in April 2016, senior representatives of several United Nations agencies have taken part in a high-level multi-stakeholder perspective in Geneva, Switzerland.


Reports and Studies

UNAIDS: On the Fast-Track to end AIDS by 2030: Focus on location and population

UNAIDS - Within the pages of this World AIDS Day report, Focus on location and population, are more than 50 examples of how countries are getting on the Fast-Track.


UNAIDS Strategy 2016-2021: On the Fast-Track to end AIDS

UNAIDS - The UNAIDS 2016–2021 Strategy is a bold call to action to get on the Fast-Track and reach people being left behind. It is an urgent call to front-load investments.


Sustaining the human rights response to HIV

UNAIDS - The human rights response to HIV, largely implemented by civil society, has been crucial to the HIV response, but it appears that the funding for this work is insufficient and may be threatened further.


Global Fund Board Approves New Strategic Framework

Global Fund, Geneva - "The Board of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria approved a new framework for its 2017-2022 strategy to maximize impact, strengthen systems for health, promote and protect human rights and gender equality, and mobilize additional resources.


Resources for Action for HIV and health programming with and for MSM - "The resource guide aims to provide a quick reference on a wide range of topics relevant to rights-based, effective, sustainable and integrated community-led and public health responses to men who have sex with men (MSM).


How do we maximise global HIV treatment access? - "IAPAC, the International Association of Practitioners in AIDS Care, has issued a set of guidelines that aims to establish a common set of best practices to ensure that as many people living with HIV as possible are diagnosed, cared for, receive treatment and achieve undetectable viral loads.



Filmpremiere zum Weltaidstag am 1. Dezember 2015

mission 21 - Mit einer Filmpremiere und Diskussion am 1. Dezember, dem Welt-Aids-Tag, rückt Mission 21 das Thema HIV/Aids wieder stärker ins Bewusstsein der Öffentlichkeit.


Swiss TPH Winter Symposium 2015

Swiss TPH, 10 December 2015 - Drug resistance is emerging globally as a major public health and economic problem. It is both urgent and highly complex, affecting key aspects of human and animal health as well as agriculture and the environment in many interconnected ways. Whether they target pathogens such as viruses, bacteria, parasites or their vectors, few drugs exist today, for which resistance has not already been documented.


Symposium: Sexual and Reproductive Health in fragile environments

Royal Tropical Institute (KIT) - On December 10th a symposium about challenges and innovative approaches that have improved the sexual and reproductive health of people in fragile environments will be held at KIT. Lessons learned and good practices shall be shared.


21st International AIDS Conference

International AIDS Society, 17 July 2016 - It is with pleasure that we invite you to take part in the 21st International AIDS Conference, on 17-22 July 2016 in Durban, South Africa. The biennial International AIDS Conference truly is the premier meeting where science, leadership and community meet for advancing all facets of our collective efforts to treat and prevent HIV.

read more... is a platform set up by the Network Medicus Mundi Switzerland. is sponsored and shaped by its 22 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, FEPA, Fédération Genevoise de Coopération, Gemeinschaft St. Anna-Schwestern, IAMANEH Switzerland, Kindernothilfe Schweiz, Kwa Wazee, mediCuba-Suisse, mission 21, 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.