As part of the U.S. government’s approach to accelerate our response to help people in need by limiting the further spread of monkeypox around the world, the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) is leveraging its robust platform to help countries prevent and respond to monkeypox. I urge all governments to work together with affected communities and international stakeholders to remain vigilant and design response efforts to protect all populations in need [building on resources developed in the fight against HIV/AIDS. We must fight efforts that stigmatize certain populations and stand together in the face of a known but newly widespread enemy: the monkeypox virus.
As with COVID-19, PEPFAR is applying similar parameters to the monkeypox response in the context of seeking to achieve the best possible health outcomes for people living with HIV (PLHIV). PEPFAR, through its trusted partnerships with governments and communities, is leveraging its PEPFAR-supported laboratory, surveillance and public health, and community infrastructure and programming to help prevent and respond to monkeypox. PEPFAR is engaging its human resources, surveillance and diagnostic platforms, sample transportation, data systems, and waste management/biosafety that support diagnostics. In addition, PEPFAR teams are utilizing existing community and public health networks, as appropriate, for risk communication and prevention messaging to those populations most at-risk of monkeypox, including PLHIV who may be immunocompromised.
PEPFAR will continue to do its part to protect HIV/AIDS gains while efficiently and effectively helping countries respond to current outbreaks and prevent future health threats.