U.S., Malawi Partner in Fight Against AIDS

Posted by Eric Goosby
December 17, 2009
Children at Orphanage in Malawi

About the Author: Ambassador Eric Goosby serves as the U.S. Global AIDS Coordinator, leading all U.S. Government international HIV/AIDS efforts.

This week, I had the honor of traveling to Malawi to visit with Government of the Republic of Malawi officials and civil society members and observe programs supported by the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR). I also attended the Third Southern Africa Regional Meeting of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria with Professor Michel Kazatchkine, Executive Director of the Global Fund.

The progress I observed on my visit was very encouraging.

With support from PEPFAR and the Global Fund, Malawi has provided life-saving antiretroviral therapy to over 170,000 Malawians, and supported HIV counseling and testing services for over 300,000 pregnant women. Additionally, the number of centers providing HIV/AIDS services in Malawi has increased from only nine in 2004 to 300 this year. The country is continually increasing access to HIV/AIDS prevention, treatment and care in areas in need of services.

On Tuesday, I had the privilege of joining United States Ambassador to Malawi Peter W. Bodde at the dedication of the new HIV and AIDS Department of the Malawian Ministry of Health. The state-of-the-art building, which will strengthen HIV/AIDS prevention, care, and treatment efforts, was supported by the United States Government in response to a request from the Ministry. This building will house the national data repository, which will allow national data collected from all districts to be collected and analyzed in a timely manner and to produce information that will guide data-driven national health policy development. The facility is a product of the growing partnership between our two countries, embodied by the Partnership Framework that we entered into earlier this year.

Prof. Kazatchkine and I also met jointly with Government officials and visited programs jointly supported by the Government, PEPFAR, the Global Fund, and other partners. The Global Fund is a critical funding vehicle in the fight against HIV/AIDS, and the U.S. Government is committed to continuing to work through the Global Fund and U.S. bilateral programs to support the people of Malawi in defeating this disease.

As I said at the Global Fund Regional Meeting, PEPFAR is working with Malawi and other countries around the world to transition their HIV/AIDS response from an emergency response to a sustainable one. The Global Fund will be a key ally in Malawi, as it is in the other countries where we are working, during this transition. Prof. Kazatchkine and I are committed to continuing to coordinate PEPFAR and Global Fund activities to ensure that resources are used efficiently and effectively. To date, our two programs have supported countries as they placed more than 3.7 million people on antiretroviral treatment and delivered prevention interventions to millions more.

Additionally, we will work together to develop and support country-level leadership, scale up proven HIV/AIDS interventions, strengthen health systems, and expand the integration of HIV/AIDS programs through linkages with other activities supported by the U.S. Government and other partners.

It is clear after my time in Malawi that the country is in a position to make large strides towards defeating their epidemic. The Malawian Government’s leadership in the fight against HIV/AIDS is a real example for others in the region. The U.S. Government looks forward to the accomplishments that our continuing partnerships with Malawi, the Global Fund and other global partners will make in the coming years.

Comments

Comments

Denis M.
|
Malawi
December 18, 2009

Denis in Malawi writes:

Your assesment of the HIV/AIDS situation in Malawi and the support the U.S. government and PEPFAR and the Global Fund in particular gives us a lot of hope.

Dorothy T.
|
Malawi
December 18, 2009

Dorothy in Malawi writes:

Please read the article. It is a very good article to keep you in perspective as you start your new job at MACRO.

Mabvuto B.
|
Denmark
December 18, 2009

Mabvuto in Denmark writes:

Mr. Ambassador, I would have loved to cover your visit to Malawi but unfortunately I'm in Copenhagen covering the world summit. But thanks for your blog which the U.S. public affairs has made available to us for us to make comments and maybe stimulate debate. Its true PEPFAR has done so much for my country in terms of putting more people on free treatment and fighting other disease. But I fear the day when the U.S. and other major donors will pull out. What will happen, Mr. Abassodor to thousands that have become so dependant on US funds for them to live longer? I wanted to ask how you are working in making our governments to priotise on fighting disease not only in Malawi but other countries on the continet because the truth, Mr ambassador, is that our governments spend millions of dollars on improving their personal well-being-fancy cars, luxury travel at the expense of the poor. How can the U.S. and other donor nations help change the mindset of our governments? I feel its time the U.S. led other nations in making poor nations accountable to their people and spend more on health. I want to see the day my paliament would spend months discussing how to fight disease and fund the fight. Thank you for visiting my country to see first hand what can be done to change people's lives.

bath
December 30, 2009

Bath writes:

Very impressive posting. I enjoyed it. I think others will like it & find it useful for them. Good luck with your work. ;-)

Nick
|
United States
January 15, 2010

Nick in U.S.A. writes:

Awesome posting man!
You are a great blogger. I like your work. Truly you are a genius.
Keep up the good work Man!!

Mike
|
Russia
May 10, 2010

Mike in Russia writes:

It is excellent to have the ability to read a good quality article with useful data on topics that a lot are interested on. The reason that the data stated are all first hand on live experiences even aid more. Go on doing what you do as we enjoy reading your work.

David J.
|
Texas, USA
July 8, 2010

David J. in Texas writes:

Thank you U.S. and PEPFAR!
One of the countless inspirational stories is that of a woman Ruth Nkuya.

When her husband wanted to have a second child, Ruth insisted on being tested for HIV first. Ruth, who lives in Malawi, discovered that she was HIV-positive when her only daughter was five years old in 1996. Her husband was two weeks from starting antiretroviral treatment (ART) when he died in 1993. Now a secretary for the National Association for People Living with AIDS, Ruth looks out at the flame trees in Lilongwe’s City Centre and her face breaks into a smile as she thinks of the ART she receives through Lighthouse Trust, an organization supported by the U.S. Government. “Since I started antiretroviral treatment, my CD4 count has gone from 308 to 900. I am able to work now and take care of my daughter,” she says. .

.

Latest Stories

December 7, 2009

Livestock as Lifeblood

Writing for the U.S. Department of State DipNote blog, Ambassador Ertharin Cousin recounts her visit to Jijiga, Ethiopia, where she… more
December 7, 2009

U.S. Center Opens at COP-15

Writing for the U.S. Department of State DipNote blog, Billie Gross highlights the opening of UN Climate Change Conference (COP-15)… more

Pages