Call for submission of country case studies on “COVID-19 and HIV: sustaining HIV gains and building back better and fairer HIV responses” for the Thematic Segment of the 48th UNAIDS PCB

In the Philippines, civil society organizations partnered with UNAIDS country office and the private sector to develop a mechanism to ensure people living with HIV's access to antiretroviral medications during COVID-19 lockdowns


At its 47th meeting, the UNAIDS Programme Coordinating Board (PCB) agreed that the theme for its 48th meeting will be “COVID-19 and HIV: sustaining HIV gains and building back better and fairer HIV responses”. The thematic day will take place on 2 July 2021.

UNAIDS is seeking examples of good practices to inform the thematic segment background note and the discussions during the segment.

1. Scope of submissions

UNAIDS is seeking examples of relevant good practices to inform the thematic segment background note and the discussions during the thematic day of the PCB meeting on 2 July 2021.

Specifically, UNAIDS is seeking examples of policies, programmes, services and other actions in the following areas (but not limited to):

  1. Concrete contributions of the HIV multisectoral response model to the COVID-19 response
  2. Examples of policies /service delivery changes introduced during COVID-19 that have been formalized and enable improvements on performance of both HIV and systems for health at large/pandemic preparedness, including community-led approaches and/or differentiated service delivery models that respond to people’s needs and context
  3. Examples of the use of the HIV infrastructure (laboratory, data) ecosystems and leadership to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic
  4. Examples of leveraging HIV investments (funding, human resources capacities) for responding to COVID-19
  5. Best practices of addressing stigma and discrimination and other human rights issues in the context of the colliding epidemics of HIV and COVID-19
  6. Examples of innovations in HIV service delivery using technology advancements especially with regards to securing uninterrupted access to services for key and vulnerable populations in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic


2. Background to the thematic segment:

The thematic segment will provide an opportunity to:


  1. Review the context, data and information (different epidemiological contexts) on the colliding HIV and COVID-19 pandemics, in particular on how people living with HIV, key populations, women and girls, people on the move and other communities most impacted by HIV are often also particularly affected by COVID-19 and its societal impacts.
  2. Explore and highlight how HIV and the COVID-19 pandemics impact on all sectors of society and provide examples and lessons learnt from countries on multisectoral and rights-based responses to the colliding epidemics.
  3. Analyse what we have learned with regards to the role that the HIV response investments, infrastructure, ecosystems, multisectorality and leadership had in mounting a comprehensive and rapid response to Covid and its many impacts.
  4. Explore and show examples of the importance of addressing inequalities as a determinant of ill health – as a founding principle of not only HIV responses but epidemic preparedness and systems for health at large, building on COVID-19 impacts and related responses.
  5. Examine how Governments and funding partners have been making reprogramming decisions in the HIV response since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, highlighting challenges and opportunities to multi-sectoral collaboration.
  6. Explore to what extent the HIV community was prepared compared to other communities to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic/protect programmes on HIV. Was there any difference in their engagement and acknowledgment in the HIV responses vs COVID-19 planning and response? What can we learn from this for the future responses to new pandemics?
  7. Review the future role of National AIDS coordination bodies drawing on the Global HIV Prevention Coalition external review and the lessons learnt from the engagement of national AIDS authorities during COVID-19 response, recognizing the need for multisectoral and integrated responses to accelerate HIV prevention while responding to COVID-19.
  8. Examine the role of the Joint Programme in working with Governments and partners on coordination, monitoring and accountability of the HIV response in the context of COVID-19.


Who can submit?

UNAIDS welcomes submissions from national AIDS programmes; Ministries of Health or other relevant Ministries, civil society organisations, particularly those representing affected communities, academic institutions, National Human Rights Institutions, United Nations system organizations and other inter-governmental organization; and other national or local entities implementing joint programmes addressing COVID-19 and HIV.

How will your submission be used?

The submissions will be used to inform the background note to the UNAIDS 48th PCB Thematic Segment. Some submissions may also be selected to be presented during the Thematic Day on 2 July 2021. Finally, all the submissions will be compiled in a document on good practices on COVID-19 and HIV: sustaining HIV gains and building back better and fairer HIV responses which will be posted on the UNAIDS Programme Coordinating Board website.

Submissions are accepted in English and French.

The submissions must be made through the electronic submission form: https://forms.office.com/Pages/ResponsePage.aspx?id=m8_hwrbh60SAIUKMKS0-tZrEqMw3YtpApvq6-h1rH-xUMkgzQU9QVkU4TFlEUUcwNEhJUFpIVDdKOC4u by COB Monday, 24 May 2021.

For more information on the UNAIDS Programme Coordinating Board, please see https://www.unaids.org/en/whoweare/pcb

For questions on this call for submissions of good practices, please contact Nertila Tavanxhi at [email protected], copying Adriana Hewson at [email protected].

Multi-Stakeholder Hearing - Civil Society Engagement Brief

(click on image for full version)


The Multi-Stakeholder Hearing (MSH) taking place on April 23rd will be the direct result of the hard work of the Multi-Stakeholder Task Force. It will feed into the HLM process with a summary document highlighting the main advocacy asks of civil society towards the HLM Political Declaration.

The MSH will be transmitted live on UN Web TV and the GNP+ Facebook page. There will be a moderated chat in the feed. It is encouraged for civil society to share their thoughts and ask questions in the chat. While these comments and/or questions will not be shared directly in the MSH, they will be collected and used as supplemental information in the development of the Civil Society Declaration.

We encourage civil society to speak up and participate online and socials using the hashtags #WeAreHLM and #PressureON so others can follow throughout the MSH and HLM process.

MSH Schedule

09:00 - 12:00 EDT/ 15:00 - 18:00 CEST

Opening Session
Panel 1 - Maximize equitable and equal access to HIV services and solutions

Panel 2 - Break down barriers to achieving HIV outcomes

12:00 - 15:00 EDT/ 18:00 - 21:00 CEST

Offical Break

15:00 - 18:00 EDT/ 21:00 - 00:00 CEST

Panel 3 - Fully resource and sustain efficient HIV responses and integrate into systems for health, social protection, humanitarian settings and pandemic responses

Panel 4 - Bringing it together: building synergies and addressing critical gaps

Closing Session

Civil Society Debrief Session 12:30 - 13:30 EDT/ 18:30 - 19:30 CEST

GNP+ and Aidsfonds will host the Civil Society Debrief session during the break. The debrief session will give participants watching online the opportunity to share their thoughts about the morning session and reflect on what needs to be emphasised. These reflections will be shared in the overall meeting report that will feed into the Civil Society Declaration.

Register for the Civil Society Debrief session here!

March Special Session - Intervention by GNP+ - Agenda Item 4: Unified Budget, Results and Accountability Framework (UBRAF) for 2021- 2026 Strategy

Delivered by Omar Syarif, Global Network of People Living with HIV

Honorable Chair and esteemed colleague,

My name is Omar Syarif and I thank you for the opportunity given to speak on behalf of The Global Network of People Living with HIV.

GNP+ welcomes and supports the Secretariat proposed timeframe of full UBRAF development process as well as biennial work plan and budget process, and further look forward to a comprehensive consultative process with all stakeholders in particular PLHIV and Key Populations groups.

We would also like to draw your attention to the funding environment for social enablers programming which will be key to achieve 2025 targets. In that regard, the new UBRAF should clearly indicate investment for communities as well as possibility for a co-financing mechanism between HIV sector and non-health sectors to ensure sufficient resourcing for the implementation of inequalities framework within the 2021-2026 GAS.

We have seen progress in financing community-led responses in the past few years such as the Robert Carr Funding mechanism, which not only provides support for crucial areas of advocacy and service deliveries but also supporting core funding to community groups for more sustainable and efficient community-led responses. At the same time, we have seen increased investment from GF and PEPFAR towards community-led initiatives, however such good practices need to be increased and replicated for broader coverage and achieve desired impact.

We expected a robust accountability framework which is capable of capturing the reality at grassroot level, and to do so it is critical for the framework to have a mechanism where civil society especially PLHIV and Key populations groups would be able to feed into, using data, findings and results from community-led responses.

March Special Session - Intervention by Charanjit Sharma - Agenda Item 5: PCB Report to ECOSOC

Delivered by Charanjit Sharma, Asia and the Pacific Delegate, on behalf of the NGO Delegation

Thank you chair,

I speak on behalf of the NGO Delegation. First of all, I would like to thank the Secretariat for the comprehensive report to ECOSOC written on behalf of the PCB Bureau. The report will give ECOSOC an excellent overview of the evolution of the Joint Program and its unique governance structure which the report, rightfully so, highlights as a best practice for other UN organizations.

The NGO Delegation is pleased that a very turbulent period over the past 3 years where shortcomings in the governance and oversight of the Joint Program by the PCB were brought to light, culminates in this report to ECOSOC. The PCB has shown leadership in handling very delicate matters and was able to reach a consensus on ways to improve the governance of the Joint Program and oversight and accountability by the PCB.

Furthermore, the NGO Delegation appreciates the paragraphs in the report that underlines the paramount importance of the NGO Delegation for the efficacy of the Joint Program and reaffirms the decision points agreed upon at the 47th PCB meeting.

The recommendations of the report to ECOSOC are to the point and the NGO Delegation urges ECOSOC to take the right steps to put the recommendations into action.

March Special Session - Intervention by Jumoke Patrick - Agenda Item 4: Unified Budget, Results and Accountability Framework (UBRAF) for 2021- 2026 Strategy

Delivered by Jumoke Patrick, Latin America and the Caribbean Delegate, on behalf of the NGO Delegation

Thank you, Chair.

I speak on behalf of the NGO Delegation. One of the most exciting aspects of the new Global AIDS Strategy we adopt today, is the significant scaling up of community delivery and programming. As NGO Delegation members of this PCB, we expect that this will translate into full and equal involvement of civil society and communities in the new UNAIDS Unified Budget, Results and Accountability Framework development and will result in sustainable civil society and community funding. For too long we have seen strategy consultations and global commitments include ourselves and our communities, before turning around and deliberately excluding us from essential budgeting processes and decisions. We cannot continue being left out of decision-making processes and to be treated unfairly as just target objects and numbers to fulfil country and global fast track targets. Nor can we continue to be excluded from data collection processes on a national and regional level - see that some data collected through governmental institutions are divergent and not in line with what we, in the communities, see and experience. We need to focus on strengthening the data collection of and by communities as we strengthen our participation in UBRAF and other budget processes.

Yesterday we heard Peter Sands from the Global Fund say he didn't think the full strategy budget could be funded yet and that tough choices would have to be made, and that technology, granular use of data, efficiencies, and other avenues would need to be explored. We assume he means those avenues to be with, and in communities as much as they are elsewhere. And we assume that the UBRAF will reflect this. Communities ensure that key human rights and gender inequality issues are addressed; they ensure sustained evidence-based treatment and care services for those in need; and they ensure people remain at the centre of all that we jointly do. It will be a slippery slope taking us back decades if we begin to prioritize tools for efficiencies before communities and to fund the envisaged community scale up in the Global AIDS Strategy only with ‘leftover’ funds or “when we have enough funding”.

We support the call for a fully-funded UBRAF and encourage member states and those central to this decision to continue to be bold, innovative and strategic in supporting this. I thank you.

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