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U.S. Marks 35th World AIDS Day by Highlighting Important Role of Kazakhstan Communities in HIV Response
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December 1, 2023

U.S. Marks 35th World AIDS Day by Highlighting Important Role of Kazakhstan Communities in HIV Response

ALMATY, Kazakhstan, December 1, 2023 – The United States is proud to join Kazakhstan, its partners, and people worldwide in observance of the 35th World AIDS Day. Today is an opportunity to pay tribute to the strength, resilience and diversity of the HIV community and honor the lives lost to HIV/AIDS.

The U.S. government’s theme for World AIDS Day 2023 is “World AIDS Day 35: Remember and Commit.” This theme serves as a reminder of the global struggle to end HIV-related stigma, an opportunity to honor those we have lost, and a rallying cry to continue working toward a day when HIV is no longer a public health threat. The U.S. government salutes the Kazakhstan World AIDS Day theme, “Leadership – to communities” which emphasizes the important role communities play in the national response to the HIV epidemic. The United States has partnered with Kazakhstan for two decades through the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) to improve access to quality HIV/AIDS prevention, treatment, and care services. As we commemorate World AIDS Day 2023, the U.S. Mission to Kazakhstan reaffirms its commitment to supporting the political, programmatic, and financial leadership by the Government of Kazakhstan to strengthen, expand, and ensure equity in the national HIV program and across the entire healthcare system. To raise awareness of this important issue, the U.S. Embassy in Astana will be illuminated in red today.

Eastern Europe and Central Asia is one of the few parts of the world where HIV infections are rising. Since 2010, there has been a 48 percent increase in new HIV infections in this region. In Kazakhstan, an estimated 40,000 people are living with HIV. The populations at greatest risk are also disproportionately affected by barriers resulting from stigma and discrimination, which cause inequity in access to essential HIV/AIDS-related services.  

The United States is pleased to have supported Kazakhstan’s adoption of a multidimensional approach – supporting health service delivery within health facilities and by community-based organizations – to address the HIV/AIDS pandemic. To address systemic barriers, the U.S. government is partnering with Kazakhstan to build equity and sustainability into its HIV/AIDS response efforts through innovative approaches like HIV self-testing, which allows individuals to test for HIV wherever and whenever they like. Additionally the U.S. is a partner supporting improved access to pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), which greatly reduces the risk of contracting HIV.

PEPFAR is the U.S. government’s initiative to reduce and control the HIV/AIDS pandemic and is the largest commitment by any nation to address a single disease in history. In Kazakhstan, PEPFAR is implemented by the United States Agency for International Development and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. According to UNAIDS, PEPFAR has helped reduce global AIDS-related deaths by 64 percent since its peak in 2004, and new HIV infections have been cut by 52 percent globally. 

For more information  visit www.pepfar.gov, and follow PEPFAR on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.