NEW YORK, June 28, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- The Business Leadership Council for a Generation Born HIV Free (BLC) today said it was encouraged by the 38% reduction of new HIV infections among children in 21 countries in sub-Saharan Africa during the 2009-2012 period. The progress was reported by the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) and the U.S. Presidents Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), which spearhead the Global Plan that seeks to eliminate new HIV infections among children by 2015.
"It is gratifying to see that there were 130,000 fewer new HIV infections among children across the 21 Global Plan priority countries in Africa between 2009 and the end of 2012," said John Megrue, the Chairman of the BLC. "However, further substantial gains must be achieved over the coming 900-plus days in order to virtually end the transmission of HIV from mothers to children by 2015. In particular, the energy, urgency, and increased momentum must be sustained in countries like Nigeria, which still accounts for more than 20% of the world's children newly infected with HIV each year. We are proud to collaborate with the Nigerian Ministry of Health and their partners and to continue to work with urgency on supporting scale up of transmission-prevention services on a state-by-state basis."
The BLC seeks to contribute the mindsets, capabilities, and resources of the private sector to fill key gaps in the global drive toward the elimination of mother-to-child transmission of HIV (eMTCT). The BLC is a team of private sector professionals whose only agenda is to help the world achieve eMTCT by working in partnership with governments, UN agencies, NGOs and civil society.
Globally, the BLC has brought its assets to three primary areas of work:
- Contributing in-country managerial talent in support of program execution. BLC supports sub-Saharan African governments and their ministries of health by seconding top managerial talent to help them execute Prevention of Mother-To-Child Transmission of HIV/AIDS (PMTCT) programs.
- Facilitating efficient financing for PMTCT. Among other things, BLC helps maximize funding opportunities for PMTCT by advising the major HIV funders and lining up partnerships and funding for targeted in-country work.
- Analyzing key policy considerations through a business lens. BLC applies a quantitative, return-on-investment mentality to key PMTCT policy questions to help inform the national and international debate.
About the Business Leadership Council for a Generation Born HIV Free (BLC)
The BLC is a bold, private sector-led initiative with one goal: the end of the transmission of HIV from mothers to children by 2015. It was created by its Chairman John Megrue, the CEO of Apax Partners US, to introduce private sector mindsets, capabilities, and resources to help accelerate the world toward elimination of mother to child transmission. BLC's core team in is led by Jennifer McCrea, CEO, and Anna Levine, President.
The BLC's advisory board is composed of 14 leading executives in the media, finance, telecommunications, health, technology, and retail sectors at organizations including Chevron, McKinsey & Company, Mylan, Anglo American, NBCUniversal, J.P. Morgan Asset Management, Children's Investment Fund Foundation, GE Healthcare, Text100, Jetro, Apria Healthcare Group, Johnson & Johnson, WPP, CVC Capital Partners, and R to Z Media. These executives offer strategic guidance to the BLC's work as well as skills and resources from their respective personal and professional networks. Additional information on the BLC may be found at: http://www.genhivfree.org/#.
Contact The Business Leadership Council for a Generation Born HIV Free:
Jennifer McCrea, CEO
Anna Levine, President
SOURCE The Business Leadership Council for a Generation Born HIV Free