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TB AND HIV QUARTERLY. 1996 Jun-Aug; (11):7-9.This article presents an interview with Dr. Peter Piot, executive director of the Joint UN Program on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) on the role of UNAIDS in the advocacy of HIV vaccines. Piot stressed that an efficient HIV vaccine, truly protective against HIV infection, could make all the difference in the campaign against AIDS. To this effect, the role of the UNAIDS is to carry out advocacy in favor of research as well as to collaborate with the diverse private initiatives that already exist. Commenting on the issue of guaranteed accessibility of HIV vaccine for developing countries, Piot states that it is possible to sell the product through seeking the support of donor organizations. When vaccine trials in a country are supported, it will also be made sure that the basic guarantees exist for making that product accessible to the population. Moreover, considering the impact of the pandemic on the business and economic community, Piot emphasized that alliance between the public and private sector is necessary in the struggle against AIDS. In general, the role of UNAIDS in the evaluation of a preventive vaccine for HIV is centered around communication, impact on community, and impact on prevention programs.
EARTH TIMES. 1996 Jun 13; 6.One of the most familiar figures at many UN conferences and international meets which have anything to do with family planning is that of bustling, sari-clad Sunetra Puri, Director of Public Affairs of the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF). Operating in 150 countries, the IPPF's main objective is to take the cause of reproductive health to all, especially the marginalized groups, including the poor in the rural and urban areas, explains Puri, who has been with the organization for over 20 years. She says that IPPF's role has been changing over the years. "Till fairly recently, we mainly concentrated on educating and proving family-planning methods to clients. But after the conferences in Cairo and Beijing on Population and on Women, we have begun to take up controversial issues like violence against women and female genital mutilation." Building partnerships at various levels and pushing for legislative change, such as the need for sex education, are some of the other goals of IPPF, adds Puri. She has also prepared an "advocacy guide," in which arguments to counter groups such as the anti-choice lobby are presented. Turning to the ever-present problem of funding, she admits that though the goodwill is very much there, "there is not so much money for international NGOs in the reproductive health field." But of one thing you can be sure: as long as Sunetra Puri is around, the IPPF will not be lacking in advocacy skills. (full text)
Bangkok, Thailand, Asian Forum of Parliamentarians on Population and Development, 1996. , 30 p.This document contains the report of the activities undertaken by the Asian Forum of Parliamentarians on Population and Development during 1990-96. The report opens with a message from the AFPPD's chairman noting that the AFPPD has been instrumental in organizing international conferences to allow parliamentarians from other parts of the world to explore population, development, and gender issues. Messages from the Secretary-General of the AFPPD and the Deputy Executive Director of the UN Population Fund stress the importance of political commitment for population programs. The report continues with a description of the formation of the AFPPD in 1981 for the purpose of contributing to the establishment of world peace and improving the standard of living and welfare of people in Asia. The next sections of the report describe the structure of the organization and provide a profile of its membership and a brief description of its activities. A more in-depth review of country activities is then given for India, Viet Nam, Japan, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand, Fiji, and Australia. A summary is also provided of the international initiatives undertaken by the AFPPD, which took the form of four international conferences (one in 1994, two in 1995, and one in 1996). The report ends by identifying the AFPPD's current officers and the addresses of its full-time offices.
DISPATCHES: NEWS FROM UNFPA. 1996 Nov; (11):2.As part of a series of Arab regional meetings on social affairs, an expert group meeting was held September 25-27, 1996. Participants included Jordan's Minister for Social Development, Abu Jamous, who emphasized a new role for women, one in which they could participate actively in society without restriction by tradition and culture. Recommendations included improving women's access to quality reproductive health care (including family planning), particularly in rural areas. Raising awareness among women and among communities concerning the positive outcome of reproductive health and decreased maternal mortality due to repeated childbearing was stressed. At the first meeting of this event, representatives of nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) discussed follow-up for the recommendations of the Fourth World Conference on Women (Beijing, 1995) and adopted a Plan of Action. Her Royal Highness Basma Bint Talal of Jordan, in her opening remarks, spoke about the vital role of NGOs "in women's development and their fight against discrimination, so that they will be equal to men and be able to serve their community based on the Islamic sharia and our Arab tradition". Atef Khalifa, director of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) Country Support Team for Arab States and Europe, reported that all delegations had "keen understanding and great awareness of reproductive health issues" and "fully endorsed programs and mechanisms related to reproductive health and rights". UNFPA representatives provided presentations during several panel discussions at this event.
PEOPLE AND DEVELOPMENT CHALLENGES. 1996 Sep; 3(6):13-4.On the occasion of his retirement as Director of Programs for the International Planned Parenthood Federation's (IPPF) East, South-East Asia, and Oceania Region (ESEAOR), Pritam Singh noted that the region initiated many innovative activities during his tenure. These included the 1973 Finance and Administration Workshop, the 1974 Forward Planning and Evaluation Workshop, the Evaluation Workshop, and the Community-based Distribution Workshop. ESEAOR also created the concept of Overall Program Evaluation and was among the first few regions to implement the Three Year Plan Review. Pritam brought 19 years of experience as a teacher and headmaster to his job with IPPF and became known as ESEAOR's "guru." Among Pritam's many contributions to the IPPF were his work in developing the Program, Planning, Budgeting, and Reporting System; introducing the Strategic Thinking, Planning, and Management process; and serving as a resource person for innumerable regional workshops on a wide range of subjects. Pritam feels that his greatest contribution was his ability to develop appropriate programs to meet the unmet family planning (FP) needs of various communities. He describes the 1960s and 1970s as the "heyday" of FP and predicts that FP will soon be completely integrated with other initiatives.
Watertown, Massachusetts, Pathfinder International, 1996. 15 p.This booklet contains the speech made by Daniel E. Pellegrom, President of Pathfinder International, upon accepting the 1996 UN Population Award on behalf of Pathfinder International. In his speech, Pellegrom thanked Dr. Nafis Sadik, head of the UN Population Fund for her work, especially in achieving adoption of the Programme of Action of the 1994 International Conference on Population and Development. Pellegrom accepted the Population Award on behalf of Pathfinder's Board of Directors, staff, and founders. While expressing his pride in receiving the award, Pellegrom noted that opponents of reproductive health are working to undermine the efforts of family planners worldwide by reducing funding support from the US. Pellegrom noted that reproductive freedom is fundamental and that the demand for family planning (FP) services has never been higher. The lack of support for FP among US politicians demands that the political discussions be reshaped to include the voices of Americans who have benefitted from FP in their own lives and would not deny it to destitute people throughout the world.
POPULATION HEADLINERS. 1996 Jan-Feb; (250):2.A committee of health specialists selected four physicians and scientists out of 66 candidates to receive the distinguished Prince Mahidol Award. The Thai Royal Family awarded each of them medals, certificates, and US$50,000 for their exceptional contributions to family planning. Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn presented the awards to each recipient on January 31, 1996. UNFPA's Executive Director, Dr. Nafis Sadik, was recognized for her leadership at the 1994 International Conference on Population and Development. IPPF President, Dr. Frederick Sai, who also serves as a public health professor at the University of Ghana, received honors for promoting family planning in Africa. Dr. Carl Djerassi, an organic chemistry professor at Stanford University in California, was selected for his research in developing oral contraceptives. Dr. Egon Diczfalusy, a retired professor of the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden, was honored for his reproductive endocrinology research, especially his work on the reproductive system's steroid hormones. The Prince Mahidol Foundation serves to celebrate the birth of Prince Mahidol of Songkhla, the father of the King of Thailand and the Father of Thai Medicine.