South Africa has 7.7 million people living with HIV (PLHIV), more than any other country, as well as one of the world’s highest HIV prevalence rates. Yet we remain dangerously off-track to meet the 90-90-90 targets and incidence rates are far too high—particularly amongst young people. A major reason for the failures in reaching 90-90-90 is the poor quality of HIV services available in the public sector. Poor HIV outcomes can be directly linked back to gaps in service delivery and poor quality public health services. With the establishment of Ritshidze — a community-led monitoring system developed by organisations representing people living with HIVin South Africa — we have begun to more systematically document the failures in quality HIV service delivery.
This year’s People’s COP has been developed using data collected through Ritshidze and clearly outlines several interventions that would improve the state of the HIV and TB response, including measures to support people to get and stay on treatment. It was presented to U.S. Ambassador Deborah Birx and team at a community meeting today, where public healthcare users shared their experiences of accessing HIV and other health services in public clinics.
The People’s COP20 is endorsed by the Treatment Action Campaign (TAC), the National Association of People Living with HIV (NAPWA), Positive Action Campaign, Positive Women’s Network (PWN) and the South African Network of Religious Leaders Living with and affected by HIV/AIDS (SANERELA+), Health Global Access Project (Health GAP), the Foundation for AIDS Research (amfAR), and Georgetown University’s O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law, Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), SANAC Civil Society Forum, SECTION27, and TB Proof.