Vitaly Tkachuk, Network Regional Development Director, was selected as a delegate in the UNAIDS Programme Coordinating Board for 2017-2018 from the NGOs of the European Region. We congratulate Vitaly. He was chosen among the leading experts who have many years of experience in combating the HIV epidemic in the region and among the leaders of civic activism. This is also an undeniable recognition of the Ukrainian experience and, in particular, the leading role of the Network of PLWH in response to the HIV epidemic in Ukraine and the region.
“I am grateful for the trust and appreciation of the Network achievements and my personal contribution to the result. My personal history of development is closely connected with the history of the Network as the leader of HIV service in the region. I am sincerely convinced that in the post-Soviet countries and, particularly, in Ukraine, the civil society, which is strong by diverse communities representation, is the driving force of the response to the epidemic and the flagship in the promotion of humanistic ideas in politics. The Ukrainian experience, as the most progressive and dynamic one, should be, and will be implemented in a collective response to the HIV epidemic,” Vitaly Tkachuk said. – Based on my experience and personal history, I understand and can assess whether this or that initiative is really effective; whether it is an action for the sake of action; whether it entails a useful result in the context of the main goals of UNAIDS. All this will be reflected in my work in the PCA UNAIDS. Humane drug policy, affordable drug prices, public funding and strong patient communities will always be my priority.”
Vitaly Tkachuk emphasizes that there are a number of issues to be solved such as underfunding of state programmes on prevention, care and support, and HIV/AIDS treatment, discrimination against members of vulnerable groups, low awareness of the general population, and pharmaceutical monopolies, etc.
Ukraine has successful experience in budget advocacy, patent opposition, the formation of an exclusive price for drugs, the introduction of simplified drugs registration, health care reform, and legislative changes. All these things have happened under the leadership of patient organizations. These approaches will be accurately presented at the PCA UNAIDS strategic sessions. The first meeting is already scheduled for June, 2017.
UNAIDS is the first UN programme with official representation of the civil society in its governing body. The delegation of NGOs in the UNAIDS Coordinating Board performs three functions: