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GILEAD SCIENCES AWARDS OVER US$1.5 MILLION TO STRENGTHEN SUPPORT FOR COMMUNITY-LED HIV PROJECTS IN ASIA PACIFIC

Gilead Sciences, Inc.
2023-11-29 11:00 1532

–2023 Gilead Asia Pacific Rainbow Grant Funding Will Support 40 Projects In 2024-2025 To Reduce HIV Stigma And Improve Equity Across Asia Pacific –
– Since 2018, The Gilead Asia Pacific Rainbow Grant Has Awarded Close To US$6 Million To 144 Community-Based Projects In The Region, Supporting 130 000 People To Be Screened, Tested, And Counselled For HIV –
– Impact Report Identifies Unique Needs In High, Middle And Low Income Settings And Highlights Challenges Faced By Key Populations In Accessing HIV Education And Services –

SINGAPORE, Nov. 29, 2023 /PRNewswire/ -- Gilead Sciences Inc. today announced the recipients of its 2023 Asia Pacific Rainbow Grant ("Grant"), proudly supporting this year's World AIDS Day call by UNAIDS for communities to lead on the path to end HIV.

The Grant supports community-led responses to address HIV-related needs with a focus on tackling inequalities and diverse barriers in Asia Pacific to eliminate HIV as a public health threat. Projects supported by the Grant empower underserved communities to overcome obstacles to care and help people living with HIV (PLHIV) lead healthy and enriching lives.

This year, Gilead will be awarding more than US$1.5 million to 40 projects in Asia Pacific. Projects in the 2023 cycle will tackle HIV-related stigma through an integrated and people-centric approach that focuses on addressing HIV-related social determinants of health that impact at-risk populations; integrating mental wellness in HIV care and addressing stigma; and uplifting populations at risk of "being left behind".

In Singapore, one of the newly awarded grantees is The T Project, the nation's first and only provider of social service for the transgender community. To improve access to HIV testing and care service for this key population, funding will support the creation of a transgender people-specific sexual health guidebook, community outreach, and regular HIV testing and care services. Meanwhile in Chinese Mainland, grantee Shanghai Qing'Ai Health Promotion Center looks to explore art therapy as a way to enhance psychological support and treatment adherence for newly diagnosed PLHIV. Art pieces created by participants of the initiative will eventually be displayed at a public exhibition, with the aim to foster a greater understanding and inclusive environment for PLHIV.

Since the inception of the regional grant program in 2018, Gilead Sciences has awarded close to US$6 million in support of 144 community-led projects to address unmet HIV-related needs targeting 23 geographies. To mark the fifth anniversary milestone of the Grant, Gilead today also publishes an Impact Report capturing how funded projects have contributed to progress towards the Joint United Nations Program's 95-95-95 goals. This includes the support of over 130 000 people to get screened, tested, and counselled for HIV.

In a self-reported survey, grantees across the 2018 to 2021 cycles highlighted how funding from the Grant has supported their frontline work. This has catalyzed partnerships with more than 300 key stakeholders such as healthcare providers, governments, academics, and international organizations. By targeting a diverse and growing mix of key populations including young people, women, migrant populations, and transgender people, the Grant has also helped address challenges faced by groups disproportionately affected by the HIV epidemic in the Asia Pacific region.

Other key findings highlight the unique needs of communities across different geographies and income levels (as categorized by the World Health Organization):

  • Community partners in emerging geographies[1] prioritize addressing gaps in critical capacities to ensure access to HIV care across challenging outreach settings.
  • Community partners in upper-middle income geographies[2] focus on improving the quality of life for PLHIV and key populations, expanding most resources for HIV education and literacy and addressing stigma and discrimination.
  • Community partners in high income geographies[3] emphasize environment-shaping initiatives that will expand access to HIV care and overcome systemic barriers faced by hard-to-reach populations.

"HIV is no longer a fatal disease, but stigma and discrimination still hinder the ability for people living with HIV to have health equity and lead quality, healthy lives. Through support from the Gilead Asia Pacific Rainbow Grant, we conducted a systematic review in 2019 to demonstrate how HIV criminalization and mandatory disclosure of HIV status in Taiwan was counterproductive to the national goal of HIV eradication," said Fletcher Chiu, Communications Director from Persons with HIV/AIDS Right Advocacy Association Taiwan (PRAATW). "This work has been crucial in the collective effort to overturn Article 21[4] and also helped establish Taiwan's first Undetectable = Untransmissible (U=U) Day in 2023. We look forward to deepening our partnership with Gilead as we work to expand HIV education and access to care in Taiwan."

"Our community partners are key to expanding access, improving HIV education, and combating stigma and discrimination that can deliver on our vision to ensure access to equitable care for all people living with HIV worldwide," said Janet Dorling, Senior Vice President, Intercontinental Region & Global Patient Solutions, Gilead Sciences. "This World AIDS Day, we reaffirm our commitment to empowering communities to unleash their full potential in helping end the HIV epidemic for everyone, everywhere."

About the Gilead Asia Pacific Rainbow Grant

The Gilead Asia Pacific Rainbow Grant program is a corporate giving initiative dedicated to supporting HIV-related projects that address the challenges faced by communities affected by HIV. The Rainbow Grant program aims to empower, engage and form partnerships and alliances so that people living with HIV can achieve the best quality of life possible. Since 2018, close to US$6 million have been awarded to 144 projects across Asia Pacific. For more information about the grant program and the grantees and their stories, please visit https://www.gileadrainbowgrant.com.

About the Gilead Asia Pacific Rainbow Grant Impact Report

Findings from the Impact Report were derived from a self-reported online survey where grantees across the 2018 to 2021 cycles were invited to report how the Grant has supported their frontline work and its impact observed in their communities. Conducted from March to April 2023, the goal of the survey was to understand the performance of grantee projects vis-à-vis their set objectives, and chart how the Grant has performed across its three pillar goals of engage, empower, and partner. A total of 84 responses were received, representing 17 geographies.

About Gilead Sciences 

Gilead Sciences, Inc. is a biopharmaceutical company that has pursued and achieved breakthroughs in medicine for more than three decades, with the goal of creating a healthier world for all people. The company is committed to advancing innovative medicines to prevent and treat life-threatening diseases, including HIV, viral hepatitis, COVID-19, and cancer. Gilead operates in more than 35 countries worldwide, with headquarters in Foster City, California. For more information on Gilead Sciences, please visit the company's website at www.gilead.com.

For more information on Gilead Sciences, please visit the company's website at www.gilead.com, follow Gilead on Twitter (@GileadSciences) or call Gilead Public Affairs at 1-800-GILEAD-5 or 1-650-574-30. 

[1] Emerging economies refer to Bangladesh, Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Laos, Myanmar, Pakistan, and the Philippines.

[2] Upper-middle income geographies refer to Chinese Mainland, Malaysia, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam.

[3] High income geographies refer to Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea, Singapore.

[4] Enacted in 2013, Article 21 of Taiwan's HIV Infection Control and Patient Rights Protection Act makes it a crime for a person who knows they have HIV to have 'unsafe' sex, share injecting equipment, or make a blood donation or provide organs, tissues, body fluids or cells for transplantation without disclosing their HIV status. The law applies regardless of whether HIV is in fact transmitted and sentence under this provision ranges from five years up to twelve years' imprisonment. (Source: https://www.hivjustice.net/country/tw/)

 

Source: Gilead Sciences, Inc.
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