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AIDS Treatment Activists Push UNAIDS and WHO to Meet Commitments to Reduce HIV in Women and Newborns
Date:5/21/2009

sal access on the one hand and gender equality on the other, and both have been vetoed by what has happened -- by the program itself."

ITPC's seventh Missing the Target report presents on-the-ground research conducted by civil society activists in Argentina, Cambodia, Moldova, Morocco, Uganda and Zimbabwe. The report's researchers highlighted some of the key findings about the provision of prevention of vertical transmission in each of their countries.

"Women alone bear the weight of PMTCT and the result of a possible positive HIV test," said Othoman Mellouk, from Morocco.

"Many pregnant women, especially those who live in isolated or poor communities, visit a clinic for the first time late in their terms, and may not be tested for HIV or receive information about prevention of vertical transmission," said Lorena Di Giano, from Argentina.

"PMTCT is reaching only a handful of Cambodian women and their babies. Only about one in ten HIV-positive mothers and their babies receive antiretroviral drugs to prevent vertical transmission," said Kem Ley, from Cambodia.

"In Uganda, many HIV-positive mothers are forced by stigma, poverty or cultural pressures to practice risky mixed-feeding, rather than exclusive breast-feeding, which is safer for their babies," said Richard Hasunira, from Uganda.

"HIV-positive women in Moldova who disclose their status and seek treatment and care for themselves and their babies often face stigma and discrimination. They may also face discrimination and violence from their families," said Liudmila Untura, from Moldova.

"Many women in Zimbabwe lack the hard currency needed to pay transportation and hospital costs, so more and more of them are delivering their babies at home without expert health care and access to prevention of vertical transmission services," said Caroline Mubaira, from Zimbabwe.

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SOURCE International Treatment Preparedness Coalition
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