Deputy President David Mabuza today, Thursday, 29 November 2018, chaired a successful South African National AIDS Council (SANAC) Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC) meeting at Tuynhuys, Parliament, Cape Town.
Deputy President Mabuza chairs the South African National AIDS Council, which is the body that brings together government, civil society, the private sector and development partners to discuss policies and monitor the progress of the HIV, TB and STI response in South Africa.
The SANAC Inter-Ministerial Committee therefore provides a strategic framework for the implementation of the National Strategic Plan for HIV, TB and STIs 2017-2022.
The meeting has amongst others considered the following issues:
· An update on the current developments in the HIV and TB Response;
· Feedback from the United Nations High Level Meeting on Ending TB;
· An update on the Global Fund Proposal; and
· World AIDS Day concept and public launch of the “Cheka Impilo” National Wellness Campaign.
In this regard, the Minister of Health, Dr Aaron Motsoaledi, provided an update on key issues with respect to current developments for treatment and care for HIV and TB. This included the successful launch of the National Wellness Campaign that is aimed at creating multi-sectoral inclusive and efficient database system for collecting HIV, TB, STIs and Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) data to ensure a proper monitoring of the performance of our healthcare system.
The meeting further noted that the United Nations (UN) convened the first-ever High Level Meeting (HLM) on Ending Tuberculosis (TB) in New York on 26 September 2018. The meeting was attended by Heads of State and Government, and it resulted in the Political Declaration on the Fight against Tuberculosis.
The declaration has amongst others recommitted world leaders towards:
· Finding and successfully treating 40 million patients including 3.5 million children, 1.5 million with Drug Resistant TB and 115 000 children with Drug Resistant TB by 2022.
· Preventing TB in 30 million people including 4 million children under the age of 5, 20 million others, 6 million with HIV by 2022.
· Implementing United Nations/World Health Organisation resolutions on anti-microbial resistance (AMR).
· Improving co-ordination between HIV and TB programmes.
· Addressing the social, economic and structural drivers of TB, HIV, viral hepatitis, non-communicable diseases, especially diabetes.
· The Director-General of the World Health Organisation to develop a multi-sectoral accountability framework for monitoring commitments with progress report to the United Nations in 2020.
Related to the Global Fund Proposal, the meeting noted the progress made in the application for funding to support our country’s HIV response for the next three year cycle. The fund will provide assistance in the Prevention and Treatment for HIV and TB, Community Response Systems, Resilient and Sustainable Systems for Health, including Programme Management. The Grant negotiations commenced on 19 November 2018 and will be completed on 29 November 2018. As South Africa we positively await an official announcement which will be made on 02 December 2018.
The SANAC IMC also received a positive state of readiness feedback on the commemoration of the 2018 World AIDS Day event which is scheduled to take place at the Dobsonville Stadium, Soweto, Gauteng Province.
This year’s World AIDS Day will take place under the national theme, “Cheka Impilo. Know Your Status”. The theme calls on HIV testing programmes to be expanded and for novel and innovative approaches to HIV testing.
The SANAC IMC is also looking forward to a successful hosting of the Investing in Women and Girls - World AIDS Day Event scheduled to take place on the evening of the 1st December 2018, in Rivonia, Johannesburg. This high level dialogue is part of the Global Citizen Campaign, which will be in honour of Nelson Mandela’s centenary and coincides with the World AIDS Day.
At the conclusion of the meeting, Deputy President Mabuza congratulated all key role-players including the SANAC Men’s Sector, the Takuwani Riime, and the Department of Social Development in the successful hosting of the Inaugural National Men’s Parliament held on 18-20 November 2018. The National Men’s Parliament highlighted the important role and commitment of men from all walks of life in eradicating violence against women and children.Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Republic of South Africa: The Presidency.