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AIDS 2012: A Historic Gathering

More than 20,000 people from nearly 200 countries will come together for the 19th International AIDS Conference in Washington, D.C., July 22–27. With President Obama’s 2009 lifting of the nation’s entry restrictions on people living with HIV, this will be the first International AIDS Conference to be held in the United States in 22 years.

Avatar of Alessia Valenza

24th July 2012 13:43

Alessia Valenza

The biennial conference enables researchers, advocates, healthcare workers, public health officials, people living with HIV, and others involved in the AIDS response to share knowledge and research findings, discuss what works and what doesn’t, and collectively chart a way forward. The 2,000 journalists expected to attend will shine a much-needed global spotlight on HIV in an era of complacency and donor fatigue, and a Keep the Promise march and rally will bring together thousands of AIDS advocates prior to the opening of the conference.

The conference will be preceded by a two-day symposium on HIV cure research co-chaired by Nobel prize-winning scientist Dr. Françoise Barré-Sinoussi and Dr. Steven Deeks of the University of California, San Francisco. Dr. Deeks is an amfAR grantee and a member of the amfAR Research Consortium on HIV Eradication (ARCHE).

Honoring Bill Gates

On the eve of the Conference, amfAR will honor Bill Gates for his visionary leadership on global health and HIV/AIDS. Mr. Gates will be presented with amfAR’s Award of Courage at Together to End AIDS, a benefit event on July 21 that will bring together leaders in government, business, civil society, public health, research, and the arts for a cocktail reception, festive gala dinner, and world-class entertainment. The award will be presented by amfAR’s Global Fundraising Chairman Sharon Stone.

Together to End AIDS will be jointly hosted by amfAR and GBCHealth, a coalition of more than 200 member companies and organizations committed to investing their resources to making a healthier world. The event will pay tribute to the spirit of collaboration that has underpinned our progress in the fight against AIDS and is essential for bringing the epidemic to an end. Following the amfAR event will be a concert presented by UNAIDS, titled Uniting for an AIDS-Free Generation.

amfAR at the conference

amfAR will be participating in panel discussions, symposia, and workshops throughout the week-long conference, as well as organizing and attending pre-conference events. The following is an evolving list of events in which amfAR staff and grantees will be participating:

Thursday, July 19

  • IAS Press Conference, Towards a Cure – Global Scientific Strategy, 10:30am – 11:45am
  • Press briefing, The Lancet 2012 Special Theme Series: Men Who Have Sex with Men and HIV, 4:00pm – 5:30pm

Friday, July 20

Saturday, July 21

Sunday, July 22

Monday, July 23

Tuesday, July 24

Wednesday, July 25

  • Key Populations in Sub Saharan Africa: A SAHARA Journal Special Edition, 7:00am – 9:00am
  • The Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA) panel on MSM and clinical care (amfAR co-sponsoring), 3:00pm – 4:00pm
  • MSM Networking Zone: Connect, Communicate, Collaborate, 3:00pm – 4:00pm
  • MSM Initiative Grantee Meeting (Marriott Renaissance Hotel, 999 9th Street, NW, Washington DC, Closed meeting for amfAR grantees and stakeholders), 4:30pm – 6:30pm
  • Reception honoring community-led efforts to reduce the spread and impact of HIV/AIDS among gay men, other men who have sex with men, and transgender individuals (GMT) (Long View Gallery, 1234 9th Street, NW, Washington DC), 6:30pm – 9:30pm

Thursday, July 26

  • Panel Discussion: Linking Communities of Care and Treatment in Asia, 1:30pm – 2:30pm
  • LGBT Civil Rights Advocacy Today: Impact on HIV Policy and Programming in Developing Countries, 3:00pm – 4:00pm