“I thought when my parents took me to rehabilitation, it was like when something is wrong with your car, and you take it to the service center. When your car comes out of the service center, the car will be good.” Rosma Karlina

When we think about people who use drugs, there is a tendency to refer to drug rehabilitation centers as the solution, and without thinking about the importance of what the person actually needs or wants. Moreover, for women who use drugs, their experiences too often involve stigmatization, marginalization, and violence. Little is known about what happens in the many drug rehabilitation and treatment centers around Asia and whether they are helping or hurting. Conditions in drug rehabilitation centers can be overcrowded and poor, and fail to treat people with the standard of health and human rights that each of us deserve. Read More

Beijing, 17 August 2020 – UNAIDS lauds China’s decision to approve Truvada, an HIV medicine, for Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP),  as an additional prevention choice for people at risk of HIV infection, but more work needs to be done to make it accessible and affordable for all those who need it.

“UNAIDS commends the National Medical Products Administration (NMPA) of China for approving Truvada for PrEP use,” says Eamonn Murphy, UNAIDS Regional Director for Asia and the Pacific. “This is an important step in addressing what has been a critical gap in HIV prevention.” Read More

The COVID-19 pandemic is affecting the lives and livelihoods of people everywhere, but the impact is especially severe among people who are socioeconomically disadvantaged and marginalized and among people with underlying medical conditions.

Young people are particularly vulnerable to the disruption the pandemic has caused, and many are now at risk of being left behind in education, economic opportunities, and health during a crucial phase of their development. For young key populations (YKPs) – including young people living with HIV, young gay men and other men who have sex with men, transgender youth, young sex workers, young people who use drugs, young migrants and prisoners – already facing challenges and disenfranchisement from the wider community, the hardships they face in employment, household settings, livelihood and social protections have been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Read More

In Asia and the Pacific, young key populations (YKPs) experience gender-based violence (GBV) and multiple, intersecting discrimination on the basis of age, race, ethnicity, HIV status, economic status, geographical status, religion, migration status, disability, and sexual orientation and gender identity, expression and sex characteristics (SOGIESC).

Stigma, discrimination and GBV aggravate HIV and other health threats faced by YKPs. They also obstruct YKPs from accessing vital information and the services they need, including health, social protection and legal services. Read More

ZERO DISCRIMINATION IN THE TIME OF COVID-19

SOCIAL MEDIA PACKAGE AND KEY MESSAGES

For those most vulnerable to HIV – including people living with HIV, gay men and other men who have sex with men, transgender people, sex workers, people who use drugs, young people, migrants and prisoners – already facing challenges and disenfranchisement from the wider community, the hardships they face in employment, accessing healthcare, household settings, livelihood and social protections have only been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. At the same time, civil society and key population (KP) networks report alarming instances of human rights violations and growing concerns about the rise in discrimination targeting vulnerable groups and health care professionals. Read More

In Asia and the Pacific 300 000 people were newly infected with HIV and 160 000 died of AIDS-related illnesses in 2019. Key populations and their partners accounted for an estimated 98% of new HIV infections, and more than one quarter of new HIV infections were among young people (aged 15 to 24 years).The response could be set back further if the COVID-19 pandemic results in severe disruptions to HIV services.

Bangkok, Thailand, 7 July 2020—A new report by UNAIDS shows highly unequal progress in Asia and the Pacific region. Because the achievements have not been shared equally within and between countries, the global HIV targets set for 2020 will not be reached. The report, Seizing the moment, warns that even the gains made could be lost and progress further stalled if we fail to act. It highlights just how urgent it is for countries to double down and act with greater urgency to reach those that are still left behind.

In Asia and the Pacific, 3 countries, including Australia, Cambodia and Thailand, have achieved the 90–90–90 HIV treatment targets (with a minimum of 73% of people living with HIV having suppressed viral loads).

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JOINT PRESS STATEMENT
UNAIDS, APCASO, APN+

Bangkok, Thailand, 26/06/2020: In the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, UNAIDS, APCASO and APN+ issued a joint statement to emphasize the key role that the HIV response can play in developing and implementing equitable systems for health, including sustainable HIV and COVID-19 programming.

Vulnerable and marginalized people are often the most affected by COVID-19, physically, economically and socially. They are the least able to protect themselves, often living in crowded conditions without sufficient hygiene facilities or on the street. In the context of lockdowns, women have faced increased rates of gender-based violence. Vulnerable and marginalized people are also the least likely to be able to access social protection measures designed to ensure access to basic food, hygiene and livelihood support. Read More

JOINT STATEMENT 
UNAIDS, APCASO and APN+ 

Bangkok, Thailand; June 26, 2020

Globally, almost half a million people have died from coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), and the number of infections grows daily.

In the Asia and Pacific region, we have lost more than 40 000 people to the pandemic and over 1.6 million people have been infected. Fortunately, most countries in the region are beginning to see a decline in new infections, but high infection rates are still occurring in some countries. We must not allow complacency to enable a second, potentially more severe wave of infections to harm more people or to require a return to economically devastating lockdowns. Read More