Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report Summarizes New Reports, Surveys, Ad Campaigns Released for World AIDS Day
Several companies and organizations have recently released new reports, surveys and ad campaigns to mark World AIDS Day. The following briefly summarizes some of the news:
Bristol-Myers Squibb: Pharmaceutical company BMS on Nov. 24 announced six new program grants totaling $30 million as part of its "Secure the Future" initiative, which is the drug maker's corporate commitment to fight HIV/AIDS in Africa. The grants are part of BMS' and the Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation's five-year, $115 million initiative focusing on sub-Saharan Africa, which has already awarded $96 million in grants to 150 programs in nine countries. The six new grants will fund programs at community and medical centers in Botswana, Namibia, Lesotho, Swaziland and South Africa (BMS release, 11/24).
Catholics for a Free Choice: CFFC on World AIDS Day is launching a new phase of its "Condoms4Life" public education campaign to "counter Vatican misinformation on condoms," according to a CFFC release. The campaign, with the theme "Good Catholics Use Condoms," will include print, subway and bus shelter advertisements and an online action alert that allows people to send letters to local, national and international officials in order to protest the Vatican's ban on condoms. In addition, the campaign will provide a new brochure for "at-risk Catholics who are struggling with questions around faith and conscience, sexuality and the use of condoms for HIV/AIDS prevention," according to the release (CFFC release, 12/1).
Human Rights Watch: Violence and discrimination against women and girls in Africa is fueling the spread of HIV, according to a 40-page HRW report, titled "Policy Paralysis: A Call for Action on HIV/AIDS-Related Human Rights Abuses Against Women and Girls in Africa," according to an HRW release. The report documents human rights abuses against women and girls and recommends that governments enact and enforce legislation prohibiting sexual and domestic violence and ensuring gender equality in property ownership; provide training for police and government officials; abolish widow inheritance and ritual cleansing; and ensure equal access to health care and education (HRW release, 12/1).
- Queen: Music label EMI on Monday was expected to make all albums by rock group Queen -- who's lead singer, Freddie Mercury, died of AIDS-related complications in 1991 -- available for free internet downloading in Europe, the Philadelphia Inquirer reports (Philadelphia Inquirer, 11/30).
Witeck-Combs Communications/Harris Interactive: Fifty-nine percent of heterosexual adults in the United States have never been tested for HIV, compared with 35% of men who have sex with men and women who have sex with women, a nationwide Witeck-Combs Communications/Harris Interactive poll of 2,056 adults shows, according to a Witeck/Harris release. The survey was conducted online between Oct. 21 and Oct. 27 by Harris Interactive, a market research and consulting firm, for Witeck-Combs Communications, a public relations and marketing firm specializing in gay and lesbian and health and disability issues (Witeck-Combs Communications/Harris Interactive, 11/25).
World Bank: The World Bank on Thursday provided a $100 million loan to Brazil's AIDS program, according to Alexander Grangeiro, Brazil's AIDS Program Director. This is the third World Bank loan to Brazil's "model" AIDS program, which includes national publicity campaigns promoting condom use, contracts with drug companies providing discounts for and free distribution of antiretrovirals for HIV-positive patients, the Associated Press reports (Associated Press, 11/27).
- World Economic Forum: The WEC's Global Health Initiative on Monday released a new report, "Business and HIV/AIDS: Who Me?," saying that business is "not yet playing a significant role in the fight against HIV/AIDS," according to a WEC release. The report, which was written in collaboration with Harvard University Professor David Bloom and UNAIDS, says that although several companies are "concerned about current or future impacts of AIDS on their businesses and their communities, few have implemented measures to counter the threat" (WEC release, 12/1).
Additional information on World AIDS Day -- including webcasts; access to studies and key facts; and links to resources and organizations around the world -- can be found online on kaisernetwork.org. This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.