Signing of the 1st public/private partnership to combat the AIDS pandemic
December 01, 2006
On December 1, 2006, the government of Niger*, the ESTHER public interest group and the AREVA group signed a partnership agreement on the prevention and tackling of AIDS in the Agadez region. This three-year agreement is the first far-reaching public/private partnership on issues relating to AIDS.
Drawn up in close conjunction with the various partners, the program is based on a fair distribution of roles to:
- ensure the best effectiveness in terms of the sanitary impact of operations (prevention, testing and care)
- support the national policy on decentralizing care to HIV and AIDS sufferers
- reinforce the capacities of Niger's public health system
- develop innovative means of relating with local stakeholders.
Thanks to its original approach, the project should provide true continuity in care (prevention, testing and support) and extend HIV/AIDS coverage to surrounding communities.
During the signing of the agreement, Anne Lauvergeon, CEO of AREVA, recapped on the group's reasons behind this commitment to fighting AIDS: "Our responsibility is collective. We must all feel concerned if this illness is to be conquered and must tenaciously adopt a suitable and constant response. As a company chairman, I believe that it is essential that major groups do their bit. AREVA has been active in this field for a number of years already and is determined to reinforce its contribution".
* Ministry of Mining and Energy, Ministry of Health and the Combat against Endemics
Reference hospital centers have been set up in fifteen countries (Benin, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cambodia, Cameroon, the Central African Republic, Ivory Coast, Gabon, Ghana, Mali, Morocco, Niger, Senegal, Chad and Vietnam) to provide care to those living with the HIV virus and AIDS. The role of associative networks was quickly seen as an essential complement to this care and also a means of being effective while decentralizing care to district health centers to ensure continuity in care between the community and the health services.
AREVA has been present in Niger for over 30 years. This year marks and production of the 100,000th ton of uranium extracted by SOMAIR and COMINAK, companies in which the group is a shareholder and operator. With the support of the government of Niger, the group intends to continue to invest to identify and valuate new mining resources. AREVA sees its work in Niger in the long term and wishes to support public authority programs and objectives to improve the economic and social conditions of the country's inhabitants. This public/private partnership against AIDS falls within the scope of a series of agreements signed to date with the government of Niger which relate to health, education and the fight against food shortages.
AREVA has been a member of the Global Business Coalition (GBC) on AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria since 2004. The organization brings together over 220 multinational companies including 80 European companies. The GBC serves as the private sector focal point to the global fund to fight AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria and aims to develop public and private partnerships and joint investments.
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The initiative is based on countries sharing expertise and experience on the treatment of HIV and AIDS by promoting twinning and partnerships between hospitals and health establishments in France and developing countries. Over sixty hospital partnerships are currently in place.