Caribbean News Service (CNS).
BASSETERRE, St. Kitts, Jun 07 2016 – The Caribbean Community (CARICOM’s) Lead Head on Human Resources, Health and HIV/AIDS, Prime Minister Dr. Timothy Harris is attending the United Nations General Assembly High-Level Meeting on Ending AIDS.
The meeting is being held at the U.N. Headquarters in New York from June 8 to 10.
The United Nations General Assembly High-Level Meeting on Ending AIDS will focus on the need to accelerate the response to HIV over the next five years, in order to end the AIDS epidemic by 2030. On September 25, 2015, the 193-member U.N. General Assembly formally adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which consists of 17 Sustainable Development Goals and 169 targets. Ending AIDS by 2030 is one of those targets.
During a meeting in New York on April 22, 2016, Dr. Edward Greene, the U.N. Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for HIV/AIDS in the Caribbean, briefed Dr. Harris on the U.N. General Assembly High-Level Meeting on Ending AIDS, as well as a number of other upcoming international events that are HIV/AIDS-related. The U.N. Special Envoy advised Prime Minister Harris that the region’s participation in these international meetings “can make a difference in resource distribution” to CARICOM.
Dr. Greene and the Prime Minister also discussed the fact that the Caribbean community has made excellent strides in reducing the mother-to-child transmission rate of HIV in its member countries.
Last October, Prime Minister Harris said that St. Kitts and Nevis was expected to have zero transmissions of HIV from mother to child by the end of 2015.
On June 30, 2015, Cuba became the first country in the world to receive validation from the World Health Organization that it has eliminated mother-to-child transmission of HIV and syphilis.
According to UNAIDS, “The term ‘validation’ is used to attest that a country has successfully met criteria (internationally set targets for validation) for eliminating mother to child transmission of HIV and/or syphilis at a specific point in time, but countries are required to maintain ongoing programmes.”