Bangkok Metropolitan Administration receives award for innovations on PrEP and key population-led services

The Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) in Thailand has been awarded the inaugural Circle of Excellence Award at the Fast-Track cities 2021 conference, held recently in Lisbon, Portugal. The Circle of Excellence Award showcases outstanding work in fast-tracking the HIV response and advancing innovative programming to end the AIDS epidemic in cities by 2030.

“To receive the Circle of Excellence Award for Bangkok is a great honour. It demonstrates not only the past achievements but, moreover, the future commitment to accelerate the HIV response and towards ending AIDS in Bangkok. We are proud that innovations have produced remarkable results, particularly same-day antiretroviral therapy and key population-led health services, such as specialized and holistic services for transgender people and the scale-up of pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) programmes. These innovations are not only applied in Bangkok but have become models for the region,” said Parnrudee Manomaipiboon, the Director-General of the Department of Health, BMA, during the award ceremony.

Organized by the International Association of Providers of AIDS Care, in collaboration with UNAIDS, the Fast-Track Cities Institute and other partners, the Fast-Track cities conference highlighted successes achieved across the Fast-Track cities network, addressed cross-cutting challenges faced by local stakeholders and shared best practices in accelerating urban HIV, tuberculosis and hepatitis B and C responses.

“Bangkok has put in place a 14-year strategic plan for ending AIDS from 2017 to 2030, which is under the leadership of the Bangkok Fast-Track Committee,” said Pavinee Rungthonkij, the Deputy Director-General, Health Department, BMA. “During COVID-19, BMA and partners have introduced innovations such as multimonth antiretroviral therapy, an express delivery of antiretroviral therapy service, sexually transmitted infection self-sampling and PrEP,” she added. Among other achievements, Bangkok has expanded its PrEP services to 16 municipal public health centres and eight city hospitals and implemented citywide awareness campaigns. PrEP in the City was the first citywide PrEP campaign focusing on transgender people in Asia.

“Significant progress has been made in the HIV response since Bangkok joined the Paris Declaration to end the AIDS epidemic in cities in 2014. It shows that mutual commitments and a strengthened partnership between stakeholders at all levels are key to an effective HIV response. Bangkok will continue to leverage support, scale up innovations and Fast-Track solutions to achieve the 2025 targets and end AIDS by 2030,” said Patchara Benjarattanaporn, the UNAIDS Country Director for Thailand.

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