Douglas, who delivered the featured address at the meeting which took place on Wednesday 12th December in Barbados, said, “The support should serve as motivation for other partners in the developed world to play their part.”
Dr. Douglas further stated that “the region is also deeply appreciative of the efforts made to link the support from the United States President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) Caribbean Programme to the Caribbean Regional Strategic Framework of 2008-2013.”
The Prime Minister suggested that, “Without the support of the other developed countries, the possibility exists for the gains made in the past decade, including declines in the prevalence rates, reductions in mother-to-child transmissions as well as increased access to antiretroviral treatment, to be reversed.”
The Federations’ Prime Minister went on to say that the ten priority areas set out in the UNAIDS Outlook Framework can also be linked to the objectives of the PEPFAR programme and he suggested that “it is important that the discussions at the PEPFAR forum look at how the priority areas could be implemented, so that they directly contribute simultaneously towards achieving, first the countries’ universal access targets for HIV/AIDS – prevention, care and treatment; and second, the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals by 2015”.
Attending the meeting also was Minister of Health, Marcella Liburd. The meeting was the first opportunity to bring together the Ministers of Health from all twelve Partnership Framework participation countries with United States Ambassadors from these countries to assess the progress and chart the way forward.
The Barbados meeting also marked the completion of the first year of implementation of the Caribbean Regional Partnership Framework for HIV and AIDS and all twelve Partnership Framework countries and the two regional partners – PANCAP and the OECS who were all represented.