NHMAS Nigeria inaugrats Media Advocacy Team and Gender forum

Vivian Emesowum
Posted June 25, 2012 from Nigeria
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The New HIV Vaccine and Microbicide Advocacy Society (NHVMAS) had inaugurated a media advocacy group at the roundtable meeting held on the 21st of June, 2012. The goal of the team is to promote and disseminate information on the new HIV Vaccine and Microbicide research in Nigeria.

Worldpulse representative was part of the media team to champion the campaign of the HIV Vaccine in Nigeria. The team is expected to organize NHMAS award 2012. The award has previously been organized in collaboration with JAAIDS.

HIV/AIDS ranks among the world’s most devastating diseases because it has spread rapidly and mainly affects young people in their most productive years. About 34 million people worldwide are living with HIV/AIDS, and almost 30 million already have died from AIDS-related causes. Each day, over 7,000 more women, men and children become infected with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. Globally, nearly 17 million children, the majority of whom live in sub-Saharan Africa, have lost their parents because of HIV (UNAIDS/WHO, June 2011). Although the HIV epidemic in Nigeria is reported to be stable, the country play host to 3.3million people living with HIV/AIDS making it the second country with the largest HIV burden in the world.

Microbicide is a substance that can substantially reduce transmission of sexually transmitted diseases (STIs) when applied either in the vagina or rectum. A microbicide could be produced in many forms, including gels, creams, suppositories, films, lubricants, or in the form of a sponge or a vaginal ring that slowly releases the active ingredient

Microbicides would fill an important gap in methods of protection currently available. Today's prevention options — abstinence, mutual monogamy, or condom use — are not feasible for millions of women around the world. Microbicides would not require a partner's cooperation — putting the power to protect into women's hand.

The development of microbicides is very much woman-driven and woman-focused. Large, financially-motivated pharmaceutical companies do not currently see microbicides as a profitable investment. Therefore, the quest for microbicides will only be achieved though the work of many concerned people. It is important for any organizations, advocates, and activists concerned about women’s health to take part in this campaign. To learn more about how you can help microbicides become a reality.

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