MSF & HIV/AIDS
Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) is an international medical humanitarian organization founded by doctors and journalists in France in 1971. MSF provides emergency medical care to millions of people caught in crises in more than 60 countries around the world. In 1999, MSF received the Nobel Peace Prize.
MSF began treating people living with HIV in the 1990s and started providing people with antiretroviral (ARV) treatment in Cameroon, Thailand and South Africa in 2000. As of July 2012, MSF currently operates HIV/AIDS projects that provide ARV treatment to more than 210,000 people in 23 countries. MSF also works to reduce the transmission of HIV from mother to child by providing treatment to mothers and to babies immediately before and after birth.
MSF challenges policy barriers that reduce access to affordable medicines such as HIV treatment, including patents and intellectual property barriers that keep drug prices out of reach. Each year MSF documents the impact of patents or other forms of intellectual property rights on drug prices through the report Untangling the Web of Antiretroviral Price Reductions.
Voices of MSF : Stories from the Field
Birgit Stümpfl is the German midwife who runs Médecins Sans Frontières’ Chamanculo clinic for prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT, in the trade). On her second mission with Médecins Sans Frontières, after a previous stint on the Thai-Burma border, she is well aware of the possible benefits but also the difficulties the project faces.
In Mozambique, the fight against HIV/AIDS is one being fought every day. There is still a long way to go in overcoming the stigma surrounding carriers of the virus and providing medical care for those that need it. Here we meet up with Médecins Sans Frontières teams who support the employees of the Mozambique Ministry of Health in their work with HIV/AIDS.
Here, Olesi Ellemani Pasulani, clinical officer for Médecins Sans Frontières at the Thyolo District Hospital, shares his perspective on how improved access to care has changed the lives of people living with HIV/AIDS and the healthcare workers who treat the
Dr Eric Goemaere is medical co-ordinator for MSF in South Africa. He is based in Khayelitsha, the largest township in the Western Cape province, also the location of the comprehensive HIV and TB care project, which MSF manages in conjunction with the Western Cape government. Eric, a former General Director of MSF Belgium, has been with MSF since 1984. He has been in Khayelitsha since 1999
Elena Alonso, Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) medical advisor for HIV/AIDS-TB programmes
Médecins Sans FrontièresHIV/AIDS programme SELIBENG SA TŠEPO in Lesotho also relies on lay counsellors to ensure its effectiveness. Lay counsellors are committed community members and most often co-infected or HIV patients, who are trained to undertake non-medical tasks and responsibilities usually done by a nurse or a doctor and are devoted to helping fellow patients in their villages
Karen Friesen writes from Goronyo, Nigeria, where she is on her first mission with MSF. Before leaving, Karen was really excited about being able to focus on PMTCT (Prevention of Mother to Child Transmission) as she has been working in the HIV field for the past years, both in clinical care and research.
Emily, who previously blogged her experiences working for MSF in Liberia, is back on mission in Zambia. In her new blog, Following Christina, she writes about a patient at the MSF clinic who has recently being diagnosed as HIV positive.