Tuesday, December 11, 2012

People With AIDS
Needed for W.H.O. Survey

Last month, my friend transgender leader Cecilia Chung and I were arguing (and laughing) like cats and dogs over our disagreement regarding Mayor Ed Lee potentially flying the trans pride flag from his balcony at City Hall. Our differences over events commemorating Transgender Day of Remembrance are now ancient history.

Readers of POZ magazine may recall that Cecilia was their cover girl in September, and when not glamming up publications she serves as a member of the San Francisco Health Commission.

She contacted me about a World Health Organization survey that needs the engagement of people with AIDS, and promoting the survey on my blog. After answering the questions, several of which deal with the stigma and discrimination too many of us face, I felt my time had been well spent. 

Cecilia said:

I believe it is extremely crucial for people living with HIV/AIDS in low-, middle- and high-income countries to participate in this e-consultation. In particular, PLWH who have been marginalized, stigmatized, discriminated and who have challenges access treatment due to various barriers regardless of countries of origin. In particular, I would encourage PLWH use the blank boxes to fill in what they believe are important factors that contribute to ARV (antiretroviral) adherence and better health outcomes. 

Right on, girl! I couldn't agree more with Cecilia. Here's the alert about the survey and links to it. If you're a person with AIDS, please participate in this important project:

Make Sure Your Voice is Heard! 
Opportunity to input into the development of revised WHO guidelines on ARV provision 

What are the guidelines? 

Responding to the emergence of new scientific evidence, WHO is in the process of developing a revised and consolidated set of guidelines related to the use of ARVs for HIV treatment and prevention, prioritising people living with HIV and those who are most at risk of acquiring HIV, and aiming to accelerate progress towards universal access to HIV diagnostics, treatment, care and support. The guidelines are planned for release in early 2013 - previous versions can be found here. 

What is the consultation?

The new generation of guidelines will include, in addition to the customary clinical guidance, operational and programmatic guidance targeted towards HIV programme managers, which will help countries make the best strategic decisions on the use of ARVs. Recognising how important it is for the guidelines to reflect the realities and lives of people and communities living with and affected by HIV, and of civil society, WHO is undertaking a consultative process with communities to inform these revised and consolidated guidelines . . .

How can you take part? 

Opportunities to feed into the consultation process are underway and are running until the December 21st. 

They include the following: An online survey available in six languages: English, French, Spanish, Russian, Arabic, and Chinese. The e-surveys can be accessed using the following links: 

English - http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/WHOARV 
Spanish - http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/FW3WHK5 
French - http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/SHS9L8L 
Russian - http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/MBY9VJD 
Arabic - http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/WHOArabic 
Chinese - http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/ARVChinese 

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