Fight against AIDS Visionary and Dedicated Leadership Award by IAS for IAC 2012

IAS Presidential Award Honors Prof. Michel Kazatchkine for Visionary and Dedicated Leadership in the Fight against AIDS

Posted by Melanie Nathan, July 18, 2012

The International AIDS Society (IAS) honours Prof. Michel Kazatchkine, former Executive Director Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, with the IAS Presidential Award for his extraordinary impact on the global response to the HIV epidemic. During his tenure, Prof. Kazatchkine greatly expanded access to antiretroviral medications and was an active proponent of human rights, transparency, and meaningful engagement and partnership with nations and communities most highly impacted by HIV.

Dr. Elly Katabira and Prof. Françoise Barré-Sinoussi, outgoing and incoming IAS Presidents, will present the award to Prof. Kazatchkine during the Closing Session of the XIX International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2012) on Friday 27 July. The session begins at 15:15 in Session Room 1, Walter E. Washington Convention Center, Washington, D.C. Inaugurated in 2010, the IAS Presidential Award recognizes the achievements of an individual who demonstrates a long history of leadership and excellence as a pioneer or advocate at the forefront of the response to HIV and AIDS. The award highlights an individual’s contribution that results in increased knowledge, skills, creative solutions or evidence-based policies and programmes to enhance the global response to AIDS. Presented biennially at the International AIDS Conference, the IAS Presidential Award is a recognition award with no monetary value.

Prof. Kazatchkine has spent the past 25 years fighting AIDS as a leading physician, researcher, administrator, advocate, policy maker, and diplomat. His involvement with the Global Fund began when the organization was established in 2001 and he served as the first Chair of the Technical Review Panel (2002–2005) and as a Board member and Vice-Chair of the Board (2005–2006). He became Executive Director in April 2007 and resigned his position in January 2012. Prof. Kazatchkine led the Global Fund to impressive results, including 3.3 million people receiving antiretroviral treatment for HIV, 8.6 million new cases of infectious tuberculosis detected and treated, and 230 million insecticide-treated nets distributed to protect families from transmission of malaria. “Michel Kazatchkine has been a central force in our collective and successful efforts to vastly increase the number of people living with HIV who have access to the care and treatment that can save their lives,” said IAS President Elly Katabira. “His unwavering commitments to implementing scientifically-based HIV interventions and to human rights as a central element of all successful HIV programmes have helped to define how the world responds to AIDS.”

Prof. Kazatchkine’s involvement with HIV began in 1983 and in 1985 he started an HIV clinic in Paris. Prior to joining the Global Fund, he was Professor of Immunology at Université René Descartes and Head of the Immunology Unit of the Georges Pompidou Hospital in Paris. He has authored or co-authored over 500 articles in peer-reviewed journals, focusing on auto-immunity, immuno-intervention and pathogenesis of HIV. In addition to his clinical, teaching and research activities, Dr. Kazatchkine has played key roles in various organizations, serving as Director of the French National Agency for Research on AIDS and Viral Hepatitis (ANRS) (1998–2005), Chair of the World Health Organization’s Strategic and Technical Advisory Committee on HIV/AIDS (2004–2007), and French Ambassador on HIV/AIDS and communicable diseases (2005–2007).

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