The COVID-19 pandemic has made tremendous changes to international cooperation programmes in health care. Many goals anticipated to be reached this year, and soon after, have been delayed. Many important international events have been rescheduled, including the international forum in Moscow –Reaching Sustainable Development Goals in Combating Epidemics. Yet, at the same time, an urgency for reaching SDG 3.3. has grown. The leading principles of the SDGs – universal access, equality and sustainability – have special significance.
Combating this new coronavirus demanded a significant diversion of resources from HIV/AIDS and other diseases, but it also demonstrated that the existence of sustainable systems and networks to combat infectious diseases allows for quick and effective responses to pandemics. This is very true for international cooperation and information exchange programmes.
The COVID-19 pandemic should not become a reason to slow down our response to HIV. HIV services including prevention, treatment and care should be accessible for people living with HIV and those at high risk of infection.
With this in mind, the Rospotrebnadzor in collaboration with UNAIDS as organizers of the international forum in Moscow – Reaching Sustainable Development Goals in Combating Epidemics – will hold the 2nd international virtual symposium ‘The COVID-19 Pandemic as a Challenge for Contemporary Science’. The symposium will be part of preparations for the forum and will address the latest epidemiological research related to COVID-19 as well as scientific response to other infectious diseases in relation to the new coronavirus.
The Symposium will specially focus on potential implications of the COVID-19 pandemic for HIV/AIDS.