The Department of Defense announced today that it will co-sponsor a four-day Military HIV/AIDS Prevention Workshop with the Russian Federation Ministry of Defense from Sept. 12-15 in Moscow.
Although the global HIV/AIDS pandemic has been largely concentrated in sub-Saharan Africa, the HIV infection rate in Eurasia is one of the fastest growing in the world.
An initial U.S./Russian military HIV/AIDS prevention workshop was held in Moscow last August and provided an invaluable forum for an international exchange of HIV/AIDS prevention information.
The primary goal of this workshop is to focus on strategies to develop military-focused and behavior change communications and education.
The workshop will feature expert speakers from the United Nations, the Russian Ministry of Health, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on a range of HIV/AIDS prevention topics.
Supplementing these speakers will be presentations from military representatives from the Russian Federation and the U.S. Defense Institute for Medical Operations on best practices and policies.
These sessions, combined with small group discussions, will help establish international partnerships and improve military HIV/AIDS prevention programs.
The U.S. Department of Defense HIV/AIDS Prevention Program, which is the workshops co-sponsor, has been working with non-U.S. militaries for the past five years in an effort to combat the spread of the deadly AIDS pandemic.
The Department of Defense recognizes that the military environment often provides a unique structure and organization that can lead to change within a country. Therefore, the department, through its HIV/AIDS Prevention Program is engaged with about 56 other countries worldwide.
In coordination with the U.S. combatant commands and the Office of the Global AIDS coordinator, this program has developed partnerships with non-U.S. militaries, other government organizations, USAID and CDC as well as with universities and other non-government organizations that are active in the fight against HIV/AIDS.
This program is designed to reduce the rate of HIV/AIDS infection in participating militaries through powerful and scientifically-based, yet culturally appropriate prevention activities.
This workshop in Moscow represents important US/Russian cooperation in the worlds effort to combat a disease that could become this centurys top infectious killer.