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2009 REGIONAL MINISTERIAL MEETING ON “HIV AND DEVELOPMENT IN LATIN AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN

A regional ministerial meeting on the theme of “HIV and Development in Latin America and the Caribbean” was held on 5-6 June in Montego Bay, Jamaica. The meeting, which was part of the preparatory process for the 2009 Annual Ministerial Review (AMR), was hosted by the Government of Jamaica and was organized in cooperation with the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA), the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), and the United Nations Joint Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS).

Countries of Latin America and the Caribbean have been faced with a variety of co-existing HIV/AIDS epidemics: from the nascent epidemic in Cuba; generalized epidemics in Haiti and the Bahamas; to the concentrated epidemics throughout the region.  Significant strides have been made in stabilizing the epidemic in many parts of the region: in preventing Mother-to-Child- transmission of HIV/AIDS, providing of life-saving treatment, attracting international resources, and mobilizing the highest levels of political commitment.  However, further efforts are needed to curb the spread of the epidemic on the long-term and meet the internationally agreed development goals.

The event was organized around four panel discussions, on the following themes: (1) HIV/AIDS and Development in Latin America and the Caribbean; (2) Review of progress in the response to HIV/AIDS; (3) Presentations of best practices in the region; and (4) Implications of the global financial crisis for HIV/AIDS and health.

Participants included health and education ministers and public health authorities from the member states of the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) entrusted with the implementation of national development strategies. Experts, as well as representatives from the UN system organizations, other international and regional organizations and non-governmental organizations also participated.

For more information on the meeting, please contact Mr. Alberto Padova, Office for ECOSOC Support and Coordination, UNDESA (+1 212 963-4759, padova@un.org).

 

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