16 Oct 2008

New fund to fight HIV/AIDS in Pacific region

8:25 am on 16 October 2008

A new fund says countries will receive their share of money to fight HIV/AIDS and Sexually Transmitted Diseases depending on their population size and needs.

A new pool of money, worth over 23 million US dollars, is expected to help assist the Pacific region in fighting these infections over the next five years.

PNG will be excluded, because its high AIDS rate needs a separate approach.

Its chair, Dr Banare Bun, says the initiative will support individual governments, and non-governmental- as well as regional organisations.

"It's based on risk factors, vulnerability, population, the capacity they have, if they lack voluntary counselling and testing facilities and they put in an application for that, then, of course we'll prioritise that need."

Dr Banare Bun says application papers will be made available to the island nations and two workshops will be held at a later stage.