Canada announces new HIV/AIDS funding of $84.4 million annually

Health Minister Pierre Pettigrew has announced that funding for the Canadian Strategy on HIV/AIDS (CSHA) will double over the next five years to $84.4 million annually. In the first year, funding will be targeted to support community-based organizations working with populations most at risk of infection.

"The Government of Canada remains committed to fighting HIV/AIDS," said Minister Pettigrew. "This funding will build on the success of the CSHA by strengthening communities to fight the diseases and the stigma and discrimination that fuels their spread."

Partnerships with provinces, territories and stakeholders and the international community will continue to be essential to the success of this approach.

"This first-year investment is a key and critical priority because of the growing numbers of people living with HIV/AIDS, and the essential role community-based organizations play in prevention," said Dr. Carolyn Bennett, Minister of State (Public Health).

Since 1998, the CSHA has provided stable, ongoing funding of $42.2 million annually to address the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Canada. With this announcement, this annual amount will increase to $84.4 million by 2008-2009.

The Strategy's goals are to:

  • prevent the spread of HIV infection in Canada;
  • find a cure;
  • find and provide effective vaccines, drugs and therapies;
  • ensure care, treatment and support for Canadians living with HIV/AIDS, and for families, friends, and caregivers;
  • minimize the adverse impact of HIV/AIDS on individuals and communities; and,
  • minimize the impact of social and economic factors that increase individual and collective risk of HIV infection.

There are now more than 42 million people living with HIV/AIDS around the world, and over three million people died of AIDS-related illnesses in 2002. It is estimated that 56,000 people are currently infected in Canada. About 4,000 people became infected with HIV in 2002, despite prevention efforts.


The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of News Medical.
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