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Harm Reduction International Conference 2013, June 9 - 12, Vilnius, Lithuania

Press Events for IHRC 2013

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Press Events

IHRC 2013 Media Briefing
What: IHRC 2013 Media Briefing
When: 14.30-15.00, Sunday June 9
Where: Epsilon Room
Who: Michael Kessler, IHRC 2013 Media Manager

Michael Kessler will brief media representatives on the key programme highlights of the IHRC 2013 conference – the key abstracts, the key VIPS, the key sessions, as well as information on the 3 media briefings that will take place during the conference and additional logistical information.

Ukraine Media Briefing
What: International HIV/AIDS Alliance Ukraine (Alliance Ukraine) Briefing Paper: Cause for hope in Ukraine
When: 10.45-11.30, Monday, June 10
Where: Media Centre
Who: Andriy Klepikov, Executive Director, Alliance Ukraine
Michel Kazatchkine, UN Secretary General's Special Envoy on HIV/AIDS for East Europe and Central Asia

Last year, for the first time in over a decade (since 1999), there was a decrease in the number of new HIV cases in Ukraine. Andriy Klepikov, Executive Director of Alliance Ukraine, will present new data to indicate that the country with Europe’s worst HIV epidemic is starting to make some headway in stemming new HIV infection rates in injecting drug users, due to harm reduction programmes funded entirely by international donors. He will compare this with Russia where new infections are on the rise and where opioid substitution therapy is not permitted. He will also touch on forthcoming challenges for the region including sustainability of funding for HIV services for most at risk groups, a growing climate of homophobic legislation and high HIV/TB/Hepatitis C co-infection rates.
Alliance Ukraine, with the support of the Global Fund, implements the largest HIV prevention programme in the Eastern Europe and Central Asia region, with a particular focus on vulnerable groups including people who use drugs.

Lunchtime Media Briefing

What: Global Commission on Drug Policy new report: The negative impact of the war on drugs on public health: The hidden hepatitis C epidemic
When: 12.45 .13.45, Monday, June 10
Where: Lambda Room
Who: Michel Kazatchkine, Commissioner & UN Secretary General´s Special Envoy on HIV/AIDS in Eastern Europe and Central Asia
Ruth Dreifuss, Commissioner & Former President of Switzerland and Minister of Home Affairs
Aleksander Kwasniewski, Commissioner & Former President of Poland

A hepatitis C epidemic fueled by the “war on drugs” is sweeping amongst injecting drug users globally, according to the new landmark report released by the Global Commission on Drug Policy. Of the 16 million people who inject drugs around the world, an estimated 10 million are living with hepatitis C. The report, entitled The Negative Impact of the War on Drugs on Public Health: The Hidden Hepatitis C Epidemic, condemns the drug war as a failure and recommends immediate, major reforms of the global drug prohibition regime to halt the spread of hepatitis C infection and other drug war harms.

IHRC 2013 Media Briefing

What: Eurasian Harm Reduction Network (EHRN) Policy Brief: Harm reduction funding in Central and Eastern Europe and Central Asia - The current state and options for future
When: 10.45-11.30, Tuesday June 11
Where: Media Centre
Who: Dasha Ocheret, Deputy Director for Policy and Advocacy of Eurasian Harm Reduction Network

This new Policy Brief from EHRN describes the current trends in investment in harm reduction (needle exchange, outreach and substitution therapy) in the Central and Eastern Europe and Central Asia (CEECA) region and identifies the gaps in funding that are challenging the adequate provision of services.