Invitation to Endorse the Final Community Consensus Statement on Access to HIV Treatment and its Use for Prevention: The Next Cornerstone for Patients’ Rights

July 15, 2016

On the eve of the Durban International AIDS conference, European AIDS Treatment Group and a number of partners launched a global Community Consensus Statement on Access to HIV Treatment and its Use for HIV Prevention, available here and now for endorsement. The Statement places the right of the person with or at risk of HIV to access ARVs for treatment or prevention in the way they want and in a way that enables them to use it successfully.

This is an updated Statement and shows the evolution in knowledge around the use of ARVs for both treatment and prevention. Since the first version, launched two years ago, there is further evidence showing that:

  • Treatment improves health outcomes for everyone living with HIV regardless of CD4 count
  • People with HIV who are on ART and virally suppressed are non-infectious
  • If HIV-negative people take ARVs approved for prevention (PrEP) consistently, they are protected from virtually any risk of HIV infection

In addition to the progress in science around ARVs for treatment and prevention, activism and policy advances over the last two years is also reflected in the Statement. In particular, the sections on ARV access and PrEP are new.

Sections include:

  • The right to ART for people who are HIV-positive
  • Access to ART for people who are HIV-positive
  • Preventing HIV transmission
  • PrEP for people who are HIV-negative
  • Prevention policies for all

This final version was shaped by global community input with more inclusive, wider authorship than the original. As a result, it is shorter and less technical, with the aim of easier engagement and uptake.

The end goal is to see this final Statement included at the core of every HIV treatment guideline and program with the potential to become a cornerstone of patients’ rights. The more people who authorize it, the more likely it is to be adopted. Many thanks for individual and organizational sign-ons.