HIV and other infectious diseases
Responding to HIV and other infectious diseases such as tuberculosis or malaria must remain a top priority.
COVID-19 is just one of many infectious diseases facing the world, and it is vital that it does not divert resources and efforts from other on-going challenges. More than 38 million people are currently living with HIV and about 690,000 people die of AIDS-related diseases every year (UNAIDS, 2020). Other infectious diseases such as tuberculosis, malaria or hepatitis C are similarly devastating. Although sub-Saharan Africa, Eastern Europe and Central Asia are the most affected regions, international mobility makes these communicable diseases a concern for global public health.
Until the outbreak of COVID-19, joint efforts of governments, communities and international partners had led to a decline in new HIV infections by over a third since 2000, and around 16 million people had access to life-saving anti-retroviral treatment. Currently, however, a large proportion of health systems’ resources is devoted exclusively to fighting COVID-19, leaving other programmes, including those dedicated to the HIV response, underfunded: In southern Africa, for example, this led to an interruption of many HIV treatments in 2020, which, in turn, may result in more than 500,000 additional deaths in 2021, catapulting the region back to the mortality levels of 2008 (UNAIDS, 2020).
As one of the leading contributors to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria and to Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, Germany is strongly committed to combatting the ravages of infectious diseases. A key priority for Germany is also to integrate interventions on specific diseases such as HIV into broader health systems and interventions, and promote multi-sectoral approaches to prevention.
The articles, events, studies and podcasts on this page present the efforts of German development cooperation to combat infectious diseases such as HIV around the world.