HIV conference calls for culturally appropriate prevention strategies

By Advocate.com Editors

Originally published on Advocate.com November 05 2002 12:00 AM ET

Participants in a three-day PanAfrica AIDS conference in Nashville on Saturday called for improved strategies for fighting HIV in Africa and among African-Americans. The attendees, who included the first lady of Burundi and Ed Sanders, a member of the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV and AIDS, said efforts to fight HIV within both populations are "failing dismally" and that new strategies should better account for differing cultural practices and beliefs.

Conference participants also planned to ask Congress to urge the International Monetary Fund to stop lending money to African nations that "spend money on war and conflict rather than health care and HIV prevention efforts." According to Leonard Madu, conference president, conference leaders also plan to send a delegation to Africa to educate health care workers and others about gay and lesbian HIV-positive patients, many of whom face discrimination when seeking treatment.