In the United States, after a star-studded concert last night dedicated to the commemoration of World AIDS Day featuring American icons Patti LaBelle and Gladys Knight at The Kennedy Center’s prestigious concert hall in Washington D.C. – AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) led grassroots demonstrations today in Washington, Miami, and San Diego targeting drug maker Gilead Sciences over its greedy drug pricing policies.
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Advocates affiliated with AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) held a World AIDS Day protest targeting drug maker Gilead Sciences at a company field office on Thursday, Dec. 01, 2022 in Washington. AHF’s Washington protest was part of a series of three same-day protests nationwide targeting Gilead’s greed on drug pricing and policies, particularly on its HIV and hepatitis C medications. (Photo: Business Wire)
AHF teams in 45 countries also held dozens of global events under the “It’s Not Over” theme to remind world leaders, global public health institutions, and civil society that much more work remains to be done if we are to one day defeat AIDS.
“World AIDS Day is an opportunity for us to honor the lives that have been lost to this epidemic, while reminding our political leaders and the world of the work still to be done,” said AHF President Michael Weinstein. “While we highlight the work needed around HIV/AIDS, we also celebrate the transformative work that has been done. From providing compassionate AIDS hospice care in those darkest early days to growing to become the largest global AIDS organization today, now providing lifesaving care and treatment to more than 1.7 million people worldwide. As we commemorate and mourn, we also celebrate all those who help make today’s AHF possible: our staff, Board, affiliate organizations and affinity groups, friends, family, and elected officials, and community partners across the globe—but most of all, our clients and patients.”
According to UN statistics, last year there were 1.5 million new HIV infections globally—1 million more than the target of 500,000—and an estimated 650,000 deaths from AIDS-related illnesses, which is why AHF is urging the world to re-light the fire of HIV/AIDS advocacy by prioritizing Test & Treat and helping people access HIV care faster.
AHF’s World AIDS Day Gilead protests follow a weeklong, twice-daily series of protests in late October targeting Gilead, maker of most of the key and most effective HIV medications and hepatitis C drugs, at its headquarters in Foster City, CA. Advocates are protesting Gilead over its profound and tone-deaf greed with pricing and policies, particularly illegal restrictions the company placed earlier this year on access to 340B drug pricing for its branded hepatitis C treatments for certain pharmacies. Gilead is now one of over 15 major drug companies that have illegally placed such restrictions on its drugs.
According to the most recent UNAIDS statistics, over 38 million people are living with HIV/AIDS worldwide, and more than 40 million people have died from AIDS-related illnesses since the start of the HIV epidemic. While millions of people today are accessing lifesaving antiretroviral therapy – millions more still desperately need it.
To learn more about the Gilead protests click here.
About AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF)
AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) is a global non-profit organization providing cutting-edge medicine and advocacy to over 1.6 million people in 45 countries worldwide in the US, Africa, Latin America/Caribbean, the Asia/Pacific Region and Europe. We are currently the largest non-profit provider of HIV/AIDS medical care in the world. To learn more about AHF, please visit our website: www.aidshealth.org, find us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/aidshealth and follow us on Twitter: @aidshealthcare and Instagram: @aidshealthcare.