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PATA Summit commit to Ending AIDS in Children, Adolescents, Young People

By Clementina Njang Yong

The CBC Health Services has once again demonstrated her prowess by hosting the satellite for the Paediatric-Adolescent Treatment Africa (PATA) Summit in Cameroon. This event took place from Monday 21 to Wednesday 23 November 2022 at the CBC Health Services Mvan Resource Center in Yaounde.

The PATA Summit is aligned to the newly formed Global Alliance titled, “Ending AIDS in Children, Adolescents and Young People” – a Roadmap to 2030. The event has been focusing on ensuring that all stakeholders in the HIV response unite to Do it Right, Do it Together, Do it Now! In support to The Global Alliance to end AIDS in Children, the PATA 2022 Summit seeks to strengthen service delivery leadership, commitment, and capacity with a key focus on reaching health and service provider teams who remain at the forefront of ending AIDS and advancing the 2030 agenda.

The Summit also offers an important reality check against global and national commitments, where progress and everyday challenges, setbacks, lessons, and real-world practical solutions from the Sub-Saharan African region are shared and discussed. A full representation of 53 participants made up of health providers, young people, community-based organizations, local Ministry of Health representatives, and other key partners took part in this summit where they linked with their peers across Africa in the “Linking and Learning Hub”.

The event was hosted across 24 satellites located in 13 sub- Saharan African countries brought together in a joint program through the virtual PATA Linking and Learning Hub. Most recent statistics in the HIV response show that globally, 37.7 million People Living with HIV, of whom 2.78 million were children aged 0-19 years. Of this number, 1,7 million are children aged 0-14 years. 1.5 million new HIV infections, and 680, 000 AIDS-related deaths, of which 120,000 (18%) were children and adolescents under 20 years old. In 2020 and at the global level, 1 in 3 people living with HIV does not have access to treatment. Each week, about 5,000 young females aged between 15 and 24 are infected with HIV., and

In Sub-Saharan Africa women and children make up 63% of all new HIV infections. In Cameroon, deaths attributed to AIDS have fallen by 47% and new infections by 72%. Continuous efforts are joined to ensure that the UNAIDS target of 95 95 95 is achieved. By this, the aim is to ensure that 95% of all HIV positive individuals diagnosed, provision of antiretroviral therapy (ART) for 95% of those diagnosed and achieve viral suppression for 95% of those treated by 2030.

The key messages for the PATA 2022 Summit have been to end AIDS in children by 2030. It was launched by UNAIDS, UNICEF and WHO in August 2022. This is in response to data that shows that only half (52%) of children living with HIV are on life-saving treatment. This is far behind adults where three quarters (76%) are receiving antiretrovirals. The global alliance to end AIDS in children, adolescents and young people by 2030 is working to ensure that no child living with HIV is denied treatment by the end of the decade ​and to prevent new infant HIV infections.