The special edition aims to create discussion around the significant human rights, HIV and funding gap issues for men who have sex with men (MSM) and transgender people. These issues include:
- Across the Asia Pacific region, rates of new infection have decreased among the general population but continue to grow among MSM and transgender populations.
- Young MSM are at particular risk. One study from Bangkok showed that over a 5-year period, 30% of the young men involved in the study became infected with HIV.
- Globally, transgender women are up to 48 times more likely to have HIV than other adults in the same population. Rates of HIV among transgender groups were: 43% in India, 26% in Indonesia and 12.5% in Thailand.
Contributors highlight the urgent need to increase political commitment, and access to services, while removing legal barriers and addressing stigma and discrimination which hamper effective responses to HIV.
In the publication, Dr. Chris Beyrer from John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health points out that arguably the most striking feature of HIV in the region in 2013 is the high HIV incidence and prevalence among MSM and TG women in virtually every Asia-Pacific state where surveillance has been done.
"As we look beyond 2015, it is crucial that national level governments take a more active role in addressing HIV. This includes: incorporating HIV prevention and treatment into national health budgets and plans; providing citizens with universal access to treatments; and working with community organisations at all stages of planning and implementation of strategies to address HIV.."
Rob Lake, the Executive Director of the Australian Federation of AIDS Organisations (AFAO), said: "This ICAAP conference comes during a watershed moment in HIV response. There is a lot of excitement about the possibility of completely eradicating HIV transmission - yet there is still much work that needs to be done. We hope that this publication highlights the range of issues that government leaders, donors and community collectively need to address to effectively scale-up prevention, testing, treatment and care for men who have sex with men and transgender people."
Download the Special ICAAP11 Edition of HIV Australia