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Local Misconceptions Of Children’s Immune Systems Hindering HIV Treatment In Malawi, Study Says

Some caregivers in rural Malawi have expressed a reluctance to begin antiretroviral therapy for children living with HIV because of a belief that their “bodies were too weak for pills and their blood was ‘still raw,’ but that as it ‘ripened’ with time, HIV-related opportunistic infections would leave them,” according to a study presented this week at the 1st International HIV Social Science and Humanities Conference in Durban, South Africa, PlusNews reports.

Development Through Foreign Aid Requires Global Cooperation

The GAVI Alliance pledging conference is “being seen as a litmus test of how well aid can survive in the age of austerity,” columnist Madeleine Bunting writes in a Guardian commentary, addressing how foreign aid is viewed as “soft power … [to] establish influence and spread values – which is often more useful than diplomacy or defence in a post-cold war world.”

U.K., U.S., Australia, Gates Foundation Promise Funds To GAVI Alliance At Pledging Conference

At a pledging conference for the GAVI Alliance in London on Monday, Bill Gates, co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Microsoft founder, announced his foundation will provide an additional $1 billion in funding for the organization over the next five years, while Australian Foreign Minister Kevin Rudd said his country will provide $210 million over the next three years, Reuters reports (Croft/Kelland, 6/13).

The U.S. Commitment To GAVI

In a post on the Center for Global Development’s “Global Health Policy” blog, Amanda Glassman, CGD’s director of global health policy, discusses the U.S. pledge for the GAVI Alliance and outlines why providing $450 million over three years to GAVI “is both compassionate and cost-effective” (6/9).

UNAIDS, PEPFAR Announce Campaign To Eliminate MTCT Of HIV By 2015

A team led by UNAIDS and PEPFAR on Thursday at the U.N. High Level Meeting on AIDS announced a plan to virtually eliminate mother-to-child transmission of HIV by 2015 by “ensur[ing] that all women, especially pregnant ones, have access to quality life-saving HIV prevention and treatment services – for themselves and their children,” BBC News reports (6/10).

S. African Government Program Reduced MTCT HIV Tranmission Rate To 3.5%, Study Shows

The South African government’s program to prevent mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) of HIV has reduced the rate of virus transmission to about 3.5 percent, “potentially sparing some 67,000 babies from HIV infection,” according to research presented on Wednesday by the Medical Research Council at the 5th South African AIDS Conference in Durban, Health-e/allAfrica.com reports (Thom, 6/9).

GAVI Needs Strategic Plan For Future, CSIS Report Says

In this report from the Center for Strategic and International Studies, released ahead of the GAVI Alliance pledging conference, authors Lisa Carty, J. Stephen Morrison, Margaret Reeves, and Amanda Glassman write, “Its many achievements notwithstanding, GAVI still needs a strategic approach in the coming years if it is to deepen…

PEPFAR, UNAIDS To Announce New Plan For Preventing MTCT Of HIV

At the U.N. High Level Meeting on AIDS, PEPFAR “will join with UNAIDS and other partners in releasing a new global action plan for the prevention of mother-to-child-transmission of HIV/AIDS. The U.S. will also place additional resources into helping move towards eliminating pediatric HIV,” according to a State Department press…