Andrew Gwynne, MP for Denton and Reddish, has today backed a new campaign launched by Terrence Higgins Trust, Elton John Aids Foundation, and National AIDS Trust calling on the UK Government to fully fund the end of new cases of HIV in England by 2030.
Ahead of next month’s comprehensive spending review and the publication of the Government’s new HIV Action Plan, the charities are urging both the Chancellor and Health Secretary to make the right funding and policy decisions to deliver its 2030 goal.
Speaking in the House of Commons on World AIDS Day 2020, the Chancellor boldly said: ‘As we remember those we have lost to HIV and AIDS, we also remind ourselves of the need for further action. I am proud that this Conservative Government’s policy is to end new HIV transmission by 2030 – a commitment reaffirmed today at the launch of the HIV Commission.’ Gwynne is now backing calls for the Chancellor to meet that pledge and fully fund that goal.
Later this year, the Health Secretary is expected to unveil a new HIV Action Plan that will set out the roadmap of how the Government plans to reach the 2030 goal of ending new cases of HIV and the interim target of an 80% reduction in new cases by 2025. Both Government Ministers need to work together by funding and delivering an HIV Action Plan that leaves no one behind.
This must include:
- HIV testing: Free at-home testing all year round and testing in hospitals and GPs in areas of high rates of HIV in England.
- Support for people living with HIV: Everyone should have access to life-saving treatment and mental health and support services.
- HIV prevention: More people need to be aware of and have access to the HIV prevention drug PrEP.
- National HIV prevention programmes and campaigns: Information and campaigns that inform people about the realities of HIV in 2021, including stigma-busting messaging and the fact that people living with HIV on effective treatment can’t pass it on.
Commenting on the campaign, Andrew Gwynne said:
“The Government has a real opportunity here. By making the right policy decisions, and providing the required funds to tackle HIV, they could do something truly ground-breaking – end new cases of HIV in this country by 2030.
I’m proud to support the Terrence Higgins Trust, Elton John Aids Foundation and National Aids Trust in this campaign, and hope that politicians from across the House join me in urging the Chancellor and Health secretary to match actions with words and meet the demands of this ambitious target.”
Deborah Gold, Chief Executive of the National AIDS Trust, said:
‘The ground-breaking work of the HIV Commission and the Government’s commitment to publishing an Action Plan to end new cases of HIV by 2030 will be for nothing if not matched with new funds.
Without the Government allocating the necessary resources, the chance to end new cases of HIV by 2030 could slip from our grasp and we can’t afford for this to happen.’
Anne Aslett, Chief Executive Officer of the Elton John AIDS Foundation, said:
‘Where opt-out HIV testing in Emergency Departments exists, the public support it. It changes lives and saves time and money.
The Government must support this nationwide and provide new funding now.’
Ian Green, Chief Executive of the Terrence Higgins Trust, said:
‘Together the Chancellor and the Health Secretary can provide new funds for HIV. If they do so, they not only put us on track to end new cases of HIV by 2030 but on course to be the first country in the world to meet this important global goal.
I hope they take this opportunity – it will change lives and inspire millions.’
To find out more about the campaign visit www.hivcommission.org.uk/action