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Photo courtesy of AIDS Healthcare Foundation

‘A’ for Advocacy in Argentina!

Representatives from AHF Argentina and partner organizations have been busy on the advocacy front in recent weeks with participation in two significant forums fighting infectious diseases in Latin America and beyond.

The two events in Buenos Aires included the presentation of a bill in Congress that seeks to reform the National AIDS Law of 1991 and the Regional Reunion of UNITE: Global Parliamentarians Network to End Infectious Diseases, where participants discussed a work plan for the eradication of infectious diseases by 2030.

During the four-day UNITE event earlier this month, AHF Argentina’s Dr. Miguel Pedrola spoke on the importance of implementing a new Global Public Health Convention to ensure the world is prepared to prevent and respond to the current and future pandemics.

Dr. Miguel Pedrola
Dr. Miguel Pedrola speaks at the Regional Reunion of UNITE. Photo courtesy of AIDS Healthcare Foundation

“The global pandemic alert system is not fulfilling its function – it currently cannot react with the speed needed to address the risk of an epidemic in days versus weeks,” said Dr. Pedrola, Scientific Director for AHF’s Latin America and Caribbean Bureau. “Additionally, pandemic response must correct, not accentuate, inequalities. Economic powers and narrow national interests cannot drive public health outcomes. We must see a political tipping point where countries ensure transparency, accountability, and cooperation in all aspects of infectious disease outbreaks.”

Both events signified the need for reform and action to combat infectious diseases. This was the fourth time the “HIV, Viral Hepatitis, STI and TB” bill was presented in Argentina’s Congress. AHF also recently reaffirmed its ongoing partnership with UNITE when the heads of both organizations met in Portugal to sign their latest memorandum of understanding.

“It’s important to pass an updated national law to address these deadly diseases. The ‘HIV, Viral Hepatitis, STI and TB’ bill does just that,” said AHF Argentina Advocacy Manager Fiona Wiefling. “It contemplates a comprehensive approach to health to improve the quality of life and care for all people living with HIV and the community at large. It also seeks to end stigma and discrimination, the main barriers to access to health care for people with HIV and members of vulnerable populations.”

AHF President
AHF President Michael Weinstein (left) and UNITE President and Member of Parliament in Portugal Ricardo Baptista Leite at the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding at the Portuguese National Parliament on March 24. Photo courtesy of AIDS Healthcare Foundation

 

Advocates
Advocates discuss the “HIV, Viral Hepatitis, STI and Tuberculosis” legislation in Congress. Photo courtesy of AIDS Healthcare Foundation