The Executive Director of UNAIDS Michel Sidibé was in the Malian capital Bamako over the weekend. He was there to take part in a ceremony marking the reinstatement of funding by the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria for a full-scale HIV programme in Mali.
The Global Fund announced that it would be resuming its funding in November last year after having reduced funding in 2011 when mismanagement of funds was discovered. Since then both the Government of Mali and the Global Fund have taken essential measures to restore confidence in grant management and ensure continuity of HIV services for people most in need.
Under the new agreement, the Global Fund has approved funding for US$ 75 million for HIV screening, prevention and treatment in Mali over the next three years. Efforts will be increased to expand HIV prevention services, particularly to reach key populations at higher risk. Also a high priority will be to stop new HIV infections in children and widen voluntary testing efforts. Improvements will also be made in coordination and in monitoring and evaluation of the response to HIV in Mali.
Some 50 000 people are estimated to be living with HIV in Mali and 30 000 are receiving antiretroviral therapy.
The implementation of this project is essential for Mali. It will help protect future generations by stopping new HIV infections in children and will ensure that people who are on antiretroviral therapy can continue to receive life-saving medication.
- UNAIDS Executive Director, Michel Sidibé
These funds will facilitate the success of our efforts for universal access to HIV prevention, treatment, care and support.
- Minister of Health of Mali, Soumana Makadji