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In Montreal the pressure was on.
AIDS 2022 showed the global response to HIV at a crossroads. The field has achieved groundbreaking advances in biomedical solutions. But intensifying disparities in HIV prevention and global health at large threaten to eclipse these achievements. Scrutiny of the inequities was center stage in Montreal. Advocates from the Global South hosted and co-hosted meetings with key decision-makers to make the urgent case for faster and more equitable access to new PrEP options—including meetings with Winnie Byanyima of UNAIDS, Amb. John Nkengasong of PEPFAR and Atul Gawande of USAID. Accountability, at every level, is essential—for HIV prevention, treatment, human rights, health systems and health equity.

Getting Rollout Right
Fulfilling the current promise of new HIV prevention options requires advancing a people-centered, integrated approach for introducing proven products. This priority was also center stage in Montreal. The Coalition to Accelerate Access to Long-Acting PrEP (with AVAC serving as the secretariat), The HIV Prevention Road Map announced by the Global HIV Prevention Coalition, and the just-launched WHO guidelines for injectable PrEP that simplify PrEP delivery, are helping to lay the groundwork. The agreement between the Medicines Patent Pool (MPP) and ViiV is also a welcome step toward a sustainable market of generic manufacturers for injectable CAB and future products.

But more must be done. Delivering the fruits of science must become as urgent as their development. Putting in place the right programs, policies and investment to deliver choices at scale and bend the curve of the epidemic utterly depends on a commitment to integrated, equitable, people-centered, and community-led approaches. Be sure to read AVAC’s Plan for Accelerating Access and Introduction of Injectable CAB for PrEP, (or a summary of it), which outlines why funding commitments, creating demand, WHO guidelines, implementation studies, technology transfer, generic manufacturing and more must be coordinated and expedited now.

Several sessions and events at AIDS 2022 took a deep dive into why and how this people-centered, integrated approach must frame product introduction. Here are quick highlights on key sessions:

Populations and Products in Focus
The following sessions put an important spotlight on particular populations or products:

AVAC at AIDS 2022
For a look at AVAC’s work at AIDS 2022 go to our dedicated page. And in case you missed it, the latest webinar from the The Choice Agenda provided a status update on the rollout of injectable PrEP, with presentations from providers, researchers, the WHO and others.

The picture of HIV prevention today is full of promise and peril. Navigating the challenges is both possible and imperative. Here’s how AVAC Executive Director Mitchell Warren put it at the launch of the new Global HIV Prevention Roadmap:

“In 41 years we’ve never had such opportunity in prevention. We have a package of proven methods for the first time, and global health leaders are offering renewed commitments to spearhead and sustain programs that are designed to reach those who need prevention most. These programs should be focused on integrating HIV services with sexual reproductive health and rights. But we won’t get this done without going beyond simple community engagement and the old siloed models of delivery. Now is the time to integrate, coordinate, and invest. Now is the time for a global response that is community led.”