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Policy brief Fulfilling the promise to ‘make AIDS history’: Why the UK Government should continue to support the HIV response in middle-income countries Executive Summary Fifteen years ago, two thirds of all people living with HIV resided in low-income countries. The economic status of many countries most affected by the HIV pandemic has since changed. Today 58% of HIV positive people live in middle-income countries (MICs), and by 2020 that proportion is expected to rise to 70%. Of the five countries with the highest HIV burdens globally, three (South Africa, Nigeria and India) are middle-income. Despite this contextual shift to the HIV pandemic, the Department for International Development (DfID) is cutting bilateral HIV funding to MICs. DfID argue that they will now support MICs through the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria (Global Fund). Yet in reality, Global Fund financing for MICs is also shrinking. For more than 30 years, the UK Government has been at the vanguard of the global response to HIV and AIDS at home and abroad by championing a response to HIV that is evidence-based, focuses on public health, and champions the rights of those most vulnerable to HIV. The UK Government has provided invaluable political leadership, funding, and essential technical support to secure and help to realise a commitment to ending AIDS. The UK Government’s actions have helped to achieve substantial results, most recently driven by a global commitment to universal access. However, the withdrawal of essential funding from MICs places at risk the hard fought for gains made in the global response to HIV and AIDS. At a time when the global community is turning its attention to global sustainable development goals for the post-Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) era, the shift away from MICs chips away at the legacy left by the MDGs. We welcome the UK Governments’ recent recognition that a country’s income status is ‘[not on its own] an adequate guide for [the UK Government’s] allocations’. However, we urge DfID to do more to protect and build upon the successes already achieved in MICs in response to HIV and AIDS. We particularly urge DfID to: About the International HIV/AIDS Alliance We are an innovative alliance of nationally based, independent, civil society organisations united by our vision of a world without AIDS. Acknowledgements Fionnuala Murphy (lead author), Mike Podmore (lead author), Anton Ofield-Kerr, Susie McLean, Olga Golichenko, Leila Zadeh, Nick Corby. Unless otherwise stated, the appearance of individuals in this publication gives no indication of either sexuality or HIV status. International HIV/AIDS Alliance 91-101 Davigdor Road Hove, East Sussex BN3 1RE United Kingdom Tel: +44 1273 718 900 Fax: +44 1273 718 901 Email: Registered charity number 1038860

Policy briefing: Fulfilling the promise to ‘make AIDS history’

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