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Major focus on HIV/AIDS at Bahamas confab

Individuals from across the Caribbean are invited to attend this free conference to hear directly from authorities on the medical, social, and socio-political factors influencing the HIV epidemic in the region.

“The conference provides a unique opportunity for attendees with diverse perspectives and backgrounds to share, learn, and network,” said conference co-chair Daisy M Gely, professor, Medical Sciences Campus, University of Puerto Rico.

“It provides a venue in which to examine the many factors influencing HIV in the Caribbean in order to move forward collectively in our effort to prevent the spread of HIV, mitigate its impact in the region, and improve our overall response,” the professor said.

Main speakers at the event slated to get underway at the Atlantis Conference Centre in Nassau from November 18-21, include medical, social, and socio-political factors influencing the HIV epidemic in this region.

Among the main speakers are prime minister of The Bahamas, Hubert Ingraham and St Maarten prime minister, Sarah Wescot Williams. Other featured speakers are Dr Anthony Fauci, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health (NIH), US Department of Health and Human Services, United States; Dr Jean Pape, Weill Cornell Medical College, Les Centres GHESKIO, Haiti; Dr Peter Figueroa, the University of the West Indies; Dr Ernest Massiah, Caribbean Regional Support Team, Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS, Trinidad and Tobago; Dr Farley Cleghorn, Futures Group, United States and Geeta Sethi, United Nations Population Fund, Jamaica.

The conference which is the third such event in the past decade, is designed to build on successes of the previous events, which demonstrated that regional co-operation and collaboration are key to confronting HIV in the Caribbean.

The multidisciplinary forum is designed to support local interests and education and is open to anyone who would like to attend, including people living with the disease, members of vulnerable groups, researchers and clinicians, allied health care professionals, caregivers, patient advocates, members of community — and faith-based organisations, regional and international governmental representatives, policy analysts and decision-makers and civil society and regional media representatives.

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