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‘Optimism’ for an HIV vaccine as soon as 2021

By Rachel Brooks

Contributor | Telegraph Local 

See New African Living Standard 

World AIDS Day was December 1, 2019, yet after days have passed many are still pondering AIDS awareness. It is on the heels of this that an optimistic outlook for HIV/AIDS vaccine comes. Citing NBC News, leading experts are “optimistic about ongoing trials”. Two of the world’s leading HIV experts, Drs. Susan Buchbinder and Anthony Fauci, say that three ongoing HIV/AIDS trials are in progress and that this is “reason to be hopeful”.  This should generate great advances in a pandemic battle that the entire world faces. The highest impacted nations include the southern African states. South Africa alone has 7.7 million HIV patients citing The Guardian.  This accounts for 20% of the world’s HIV prevalence population. 

“ a glimmer of hope that AIDS can be stopped in its tracks” A Healthier Philly, Twitter 

Further citing NBC, the three HIV trial vaccinations are known by the names HVTN 702, Imbokodo, and Mosaico. Any of three has a chance of failure. Yet doctors are “more hopeful than at any time since 1984.” 

Among these three vaccines, Imbokodo uses mosaic “immunogens” which induce an immune response against a quote” wide variety of HIV global strains.” 

“Stigma and silence are the real killers” International Conference on AIDS & STIs” Twitter citing the Presidency of Rwanda

While we should draw hope from the HIV vaccine outlook, we can’t be too overly trusting of its emergence. A vaccine will not do away with HIV/AIDS by itself. 

Hans Loum, the President and CEO of Universal Care for Africa_the continent most afflicted by AIDS in all the Globe_ spoke with Telegraph Local this afternoon. In his opinion, it is best to stay up-to-date on prevention. HIV/AIDS prevention appears still to be the tried and truest means for slowing the disease down until a permanent cure is pinned down. 

“So, vaccines are used to stimulate the body’s immune system to provide protection against infection or disease. Vaccines against HIV are being developed. However, to date, none have been proven to be effective. I believe if it works and it is effective Africans will be open to utilizing it. The only comments I have towards HIV is to encourage individuals to get tested often and stay current on their status,” said Loum when asked how Africans would receive the HIV vaccinations as they become available.

“Also, through education and understanding, the diseased one can help to save many lives. So I encourage everyone to know their status. Also, limiting sexual partners to only one will help. Also, during intercourse, it is important for individuals to be protected themselves. If communities need resources to help they can contact us and we’ll try to help them with what we can.” 

The Universal Care organization reaches rural HIV/AIDS communities in Gambia, Ghana, and Kenya, but operates out of St. Louis. 

Further citing the Guardian, another goal is set for 2021 that may work in collaboration for the ambitious HIV vaccines in the works. This is a new dolutegravir-based 3-step treatment plan to improve the treatment of HIV patients in the first 3 months post their diagnosis. It may not cure them, but these new drugs prove to make existing diagnoses far more manageable than at other points. Coupling enhanced treatment with inoculation, we can draw a conclusion of hope for HIV’s eradication. The 2020s already hold great promise for the future of world health. 

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