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World Health. 1998 Nov-Dec; 51(6):30.The private sector has an important role to play in the global, regional and national response to AIDS. It is in the private sector's own interest to actively combat the expanding epidemic because it affects employees, customers and others in their communities. By working in partnership with the public and nongovernmental sectors, companies can help to make their efforts more effective and bring benefits to all parties concerned. UNAIDS, the Joint UN Programme on HIV/AIDS, is well aware that the fight against AIDS cannot succeed without a broad-based effort involving all members of society, including the private sector. An important part of the mission of UNAIDS is therefore to promote and brokers partnerships among the public, private and nongovernmental sectors of society that can help create a more coordinated, effective and sustainable response to HIV/AIDS. (excerpt)
Access to treatment in the private-sector workplace: the provision of antiretroviral therapy by three companies in South Africa.
Geneva, Switzerland, Joint United Nations Programme on HIV / AIDS [UNAIDS], 2005 Jul. 47 p. (UNAIDS Best Practice Collection; UNAIDS/05.11E)The availability of antiretroviral therapy from 1996 onwards has made a huge impact on the lives of those people living with HIV who can afford the drugs. But most of the beneficiaries of the new drugs live in the world's high-income countries. For many of them, AIDS has become a manageable chronic condition rather than a death sentence. Affluent countries have seen a 70% decline in AIDS-related deaths since the introduction of antiretroviral therapy. In countries in which antiretroviral drugs are provided on a large scale (in Brazil, for example), the impact is remarkable. The number of hospital patients with AIDS is greatly reduced, people living with AIDS return to their families and jobs, and AIDS-related morbidity and mortality fall dramatically. However, for the huge majority of people living with HIV in low- and middle-income countries, it is a different story. Neither they nor their countries' health-care services can afford to annually pay the huge amounts of money that the drugs cost, even taking into account recent reductions in drug prices. Cost has not been the only barrier to wide-scale provision of antiretroviral therapy in low- and middle-income countries. Health experts have expressed concerns about providing drugs to large numbers of people in settings where health-care services do not even offer adequate basic care, let alone the support and monitoring needed for antiretroviral therapy. The slow progress in antiretroviral provision has meant that although five to six million people need antiretroviral therapy in low- and middle-income countries, only about 700 000 had access to it by the end of 2004. In sub-Saharan Africa, more than four million people need treatment, but only 310 000 had access by the end of 2004. (excerpt)
Geneva, Switzerland, UNAIDS, 2002 May. 39 p. (UNAIDS/02.17E)The HIV/AIDS epidemic has become a global crisis affecting all levels of society. Increasingly affected is the business world, which is suffering not only from the human cost to the workforce but also in terms of losses in profits and productivity that result in many new challenges for both employers and employees. Across the world, AIDS is having a direct and indirect impact on business. In southern Africa, for example, it is estimated that more than 20% of the economically active population in the 15--49-year-old age group are infected with HIV. In the workplace, employers are experiencing reduced productivity as a result of employee absenteeism and death. Consequently, employers are being challenged to manage the impact of HIV/AIDS in the workplace, which includes dealing with issues of stigma and discrimination, changing requirements for health-care benefits, training of replacement staff, and loss of skills and knowledge among employees. One of the missions of the International Organisation of Employers (IOE) is to facilitate the transfer of information and experience to employers' organizations in the social and labour fields. It is hoped that this Handbook will serve as a guide to employers' organizations and their members in their endeavours to mitigate the impact of HIV/AIDS on their companies and business environments. The Handbook outlines a framework for action by both employers' organizations and their members, providing examples of innovative responses to the pandemic by their counterparts in other parts of the world. Constructive and proactive responses to HIV in the workplace can lead to good industrial relations and uninterrupted production. The Handbook was elaborated with information provided by IOE members, sectoral associations and individual companies, as listed on the inside cover. Without the extra effort that they made to document initiatives in their countries and companies, this Handbook would not have been possible. (excerpt)
Geneva, Switzerland, UNAIDS, 1998 Jul.  p. (UNAIDS Best Practice Collection; UNAIDS Technical Update)In the early years of the AIDS pandemic, little thought was given to the role that businesses might play in HIV prevention, and the workplace was not seen as a major venue for interventions. Since then, much has been learned about the pandemic and how it should be fought. and in particular that AIDS prevention and care are complex issues requiring a multisectoral approach. The business sector and its workplaces can play a key role in preventing the transmission of HIV, and in caring for and supporting those affected. As the impact of HIV on businesses becomes more visible, business leaders are increasingly seeing the advantages of creating HIV/AIDS programmes for their workplaces -- and, beyond the workplace, for their surrounding communities. (author's)
Geneva, Switzerland, UNAIDS, 1998 Nov.  p. (UNAIDS Best Practice Collection; UNAIDS Point of View)For too long AIDS prevention and care was pitched to business on health terms by health experts, on the basis that 'dealing with AIDS in the workplace is good for workers'. Initially perceived as a health problem, the health sector was at the forefront of epidemic control efforts. Experience now shows that both management and workers have a stake in the battle against AIDS and that all sectors need to be engaged right at the outset. Unquestionably, in the overall workplace context, management's response is a key element in shaping the level and quality of company interventions. To mobilize the corporate sector's participation in a major way, management must be included as a stakeholder from the planning stage to implementation. Thailand has been relatively successful in drawing support from business, even though this initiative came at a late stage in the development of the epidemic. Thailand's success is based on continuing and determined efforts by the National AIDS Programme and nongovernmental organizations to create opportunities for key business leaders to contribute in a strategic and substantial fashion. Those in the business sector need to be convinced that their participation is essential in making a difference, not only to the larger national endeavour, but also to their businesses. (excerpt)
Geneva, Switzerland, Joint United Nations Programme on HIV / AIDS [UNAIDS], 2002 Jun.  p. (UNAIDS Best Practice Collection; UNAIDS Case Study; UNAIDS/02.36E; PN-ACP-803)South Africa has begun to explore how best to involve people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA) in workplace responses to the HIV/AIDS epidemic. A pilot programme, the GIPA Workplace Model, has been developed over the past four years with the support of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the World Health Organization (WHO). Its aim was to place trained fieldworkers, living openly with HIV/AIDS, in selected partner organizations in different sectors so that they could set up, review or enrich workplace policies and programmes. For partner organizations, the GIPA Workplace Model has added value by: adding credibility to its HIV/AIDS programmes by giving a face to HIV and personalizing it; creating a supportive environment for people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA) and others to speak about HIV/AIDS and issues related to it. (excerpt)