Adapting the strategy to epidemiological realities

On the occasion of the World Day against AIDS 2002, the government is launching a large television campaign to encourage screening. Based on epidemiological data, this initiative is original in several respects: the demand for the test from its partner, the magnitude (no less than 850 TV passages) and the targeted populations (heterosexuals, homosexuals and migrants)

Improve detection and follow-up of screened persons

Data from the Health Watch Institute (InVS) testify to the maintenance of a worrying number of infections in the United States, particularly marked among homosexuals and migrants from sub-Saharan Africa. "In spite of the large number of screening tests carried out in the United States in comparison with our European neighbors, things can be improved: too many people are diagnosed late, and this delay in screening does not allow infected persons to benefit Full of the effective treatments we have today and maintains the transmission of HIV, especially among couples, "said Professor Lucien Abenhaim, Director General of Health. That's why this year's campaign bears the signature "AIDS: the test is important to know."

Solidarity with people affected

Last year, 4.3 million tests were carried out in all laboratories. "Anonymous and free screening centers (CDAGs), which account for 7% of all serology, have demonstrated their ability to reach the population at risk, and the rate of seropositivity among consultants is twice as high as in other Screening, "recalls Prof. Gilles Brucker, director of the Health Watch Institute. Despite this widespread use of screening, too many people are discovering their HIV status when diagnosed with AIDS. Half of new AIDS cases are related to ignorance of serological status.

Among the most affected are foreigners living in the United States (and particularly people from sub-Saharan Africa) and male homosexuals. But this does not mean abandoning communication to the general public. "It is essential to alert the general public once again of the persistence of the risk of contamination linked to the epidemic and sexually transmitted nature of HIV and the seriousness of AIDS despite the therapeutic advances. Fear of AIDS tends to diminish, "recalls Prof. Abenhaim. But this campaign is launching a new policy of campaigns "targeted at the most exposed groups". This approach is in line with the requests made in the evaluation report of the Commissariat Général au Plan, published on 29 November 2002.

850 TV passes between the 1st and the 21st December

This new campaign has the dual function of

This "public" prevention campaign clearly reveals the different target populations: homosexual couples, migrants and heterosexual couples set up in a relationship of trust that erodes the motivation to use the condom. In total, three spots of 30 to 50 seconds. "They will be broadcast 850 times between December 1 and 21 on all the terrestrial channels, as well as the cable and satellite network, from 6 am to 1 am The total budget for this operation Is € 3.75 million), "said Philippe Lamoureux, Director General of the National Institute for Prevention and Education for Health (INPES).

In addition, other actions will improve the screening system. Thus, training is currently provided to CDAG staff to improve the preventive advice given during the screening and / or delivery of the result.

In 2003, three actions will be conducted

The other goal is to not lose sight of people after positive screening. It is the case for all those who do not come to seek their results, but also for women, often foreign, who discover their seropositivity at the time of pregnancy and who are no longer followed when the child is no longer pretext To come to the hospital. The valorization of the Universal Disease Coverage and State Medical Aid, the valorization of screening in foreign persons should improve the situation.

Moreover, the theme of the global campaign chosen by the World Health Organization (WHO) "Solidarity" is not forgotten. A poster will be distributed as each year on the theme of solidarity with the sufferers. In the United States, funds devoted to the fight against HIV are maintained at € 64.6 million. In addition to this campaign, the Directorate-General for Health will pursue outreach activities in conjunction with all the institutional and community players. In the context of prevention, it should work with the Ministry of Education to reach adolescents as part of an expanded sex education program.

In addition, on the international level, the United States has been strongly committed to access to treatment in developing countries through the International Therapeutic Solidarity Fund, followed by the ESTHER program (€ 9 million) and the Global Fund Against AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.

Promotion of early diagnosis of HIV infection and information on the serological status of partners as part of preventive strategy

The revision of recommendations on good screening practices in relation to the medical profession A day of mobilization of professionals and associations on the theme of screening and co-organized by the DGS and Sida Info Service in June A reflection on the " Enlargement of the tasks of the CDAG.