(2009), "Sweden - New policy for Sweden’s international HIV/AIDS efforts", International Journal of Health Care Quality Assurance, Vol. 22 No. 3. https://doi.org/10.1108/ijhcqa.2009.06222cab.007Download as .RIS
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Sweden - New policy for Sweden’s international HIV/AIDS efforts
Article Type: News and views From: International Journal of Health Care Quality Assurance, Volume 22, Issue 3
Keywords: Healthcare policy, Healthcare leadership, Healthcare standards
Sweden is now intensifying its efforts in the international fight against HIV and AIDS. This is necessary since 33 million people around the world still live with HIV, more than a quarter of a century after the virus was discovered.
“In the future, Sweden’s international HIV and AIDS efforts will be infused with stronger respect for human rights and greater gender equality,” Minister for International Development Cooperation Gunilla Carlsson says in a statement.
The Government has adopted a new policy for Sweden’s international HIV and AIDS efforts. It states that the requirement of stronger respect for human rights and greater gender equality must be infused in Sweden’s actions. Sweden will give priority to work on preventing HIV, and to mitigating the long-term economic, social and cultural effects of the epidemic. Further, the policy emphasizes that these efforts are to be based on the realization that the epidemic has a different profile in different parts of the world. The extent of how widely HIV is spread locally and which groups are primarily infected vary. It is therefore necessary to adapt measures for fighting HIV to the local context.
“Awareness of the local epidemic is of central importance to successfully slowing down the spread of HIV. Adapting measures to the local context will therefore form the basis of Sweden’s actions,” Ms Carlsson continues.
Implementation of the policy requires that all actors – both government and non-government – in Sweden and in the countries affected work together to succeed in the fight against HIV. Of particular importance is good leadership, both at the political level and in society as a whole.
The policy is to be translated into strategies for cooperation with countries, regions and organizations, and also form frameworks for Sweden’s efforts in international policy development and standard-setting.
Each year, 1 December marks international Aids Day, and all over the world attention is given to HIV and AIDS. According to UN estimates, 33 million people currently live with HIV globally. Every year, 2.7 million people are newly infected worldwide, which corresponds to some 7 400 people per day. Two million people die of AIDS each year, or almost 5 500 people per day.
HIV and AIDS pose one of the greatest threats to development efforts in our time. As a result, global goals have been established and the world’s heads of state and government have made various commitments to fight the disease. This is expressed in one of the eight UN Millennium Development Goals, which states that: The spread of HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria and other diseases will be halted by 2015. In order to achieve this Millennium Development Goal, UN Member States decided in 2005 that there is to be universal access to HIV prevention, care and treatment for all those who need it by 2010. These are global goals that all actors – both government and non-government – are to jointly work towards. Sweden’s new policy is a part of these efforts.
The new policy is based on the objective of Swedish international development cooperation, which is to help create conditions that will enable poor people to improve their lives. The policy starts off from the rights perspective and the perspective of poor people on development, which are central elements of the Government communication on Sweden’s policy for global development (Govt. Bill 2002/03:122).
For more information visit www.sweden.gov.se