Sunday, March 24, 2013

Simulation: World Bank at International HIV/AIDS Conference

I recently participated in a simulation of a world conference in HIV/AIDS.  Each of the simulation participants selected a nation-state, international government organization, or non-government organization to represent in the conference.  Participants were required to maintain their simulation role throughout the conference.  I selected the World Bank, in an attempt to illustrate to other participants how that organization works.  The following is my opening statement, plan proposal and final vote:

Opening Statement to the Conference:

This evening, before the nation-states of the global stage, our leading private sector partners, esteemed representatives from leading non-governmental and international governmental organizations, the entire world comes together as one village to address one of the most ominous threats to ever face humanity. That threat is the disease of HIV/AIDS, which stands for an “'acquired immunodeficiency syndrome' and is a surveillance definition based on signs, symptoms, infections, and cancers associated with the deficiency of the immune system that stems from infection with HIV”. [1]

Over 34 million people around the globe are now living with the disease of HIV/AIDs, and even more disturbing is the fact that a high percentage of those infected live in developing countries. While the international community has made great strides toward achieving United Nations Millennium Goal number 6, the world has witnessed 2.5 million new cases of HIV in 2011. Alarmingly, 69 percent of the total new HIV/AIDS infections that occurred in 2011 were in Sub-Saharan Africa, the most HIV/AIDS affected region in the world today [2]. Behind Sub-Saharan Africa, the Caribbean is the second most HIV/AIDS affected region in the world [3]. The fact that we have state leaders from both of these regions of the world in attendance tonight shows the resolve and dedication of those governments to battle the decimating epidemic of HIV/AIDS, and the World Bank applauds them (pause for applause).

In the past decade, the international community has made great strides in combating the HIV/AIDS epidemic around the globe. In 2011, the world saw a 24 percent decrease in HIV/AIDS related deaths compared to 2005, a statistical decrease that equals more than a half million fewer deaths around the globe (pause for applause) [4]. The World Bank takes extreme pride in being a leading organization in combating the disease of HIV/AIDS.

In the first decade of the 21st century, the World Bank, a proud co-sponsor of the United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS, and its partners has led the global battle against the epidemic of HIV/AIDS. In India, the national AIDS program supported by the World Bank has prevented an estimated 3.5 million infections from a previously projected 5.5 million infections (pause for applause). In West Africa’s transport corridor, sexually transmitted infections have decreased by 22 percent through World Bank supported prevention programs (pause for applause). In Rwanda, programs supported by the World Bank have increased overall health service utilization by 76 percent (pause for applause). The World Bank is proud to have provided over 68 million people around the globe with basic packages of health, nutrition, or population services, and to have provided 55 million pregnant women with antenatal care, to have provided antiretroviral therapies to 1.5 million adults and children with HIV, to have trained 2.2 million health personnel to improve the quality of health services in developing countries, and to have distributed 813 million condoms for the prevention of HIV, sexually transmitted diseases, and unwanted pregnancies (pause for applause) [5].

In spite of all the positive advancements that the international community has achieved over the past decade, there were 34 million people in 2012 living in the world with HIV/AIDS compared to 29.4 million in 2001. Between the timeframe of 2005 and 2011, while geographical areas such as the Caribbean saw declines in AIDS related deaths, which as the second highest AIDS affected region on Earth should see decreases, the international community has witnessed disturbing increases in Eastern Europe and Central Asia, with a twenty-one percent increase in AIDS related deaths, and the Middle East and North Africa, with a seventeen percent increase in AIDS related deaths [6].

The world is capable of doing more to combat this disease, and as a global society MUST do more to combat this epidemic. Tonight, before the international community, the World Bank declares its responsibility and dedication in increasing efforts for combating the global spread of HIV/AIDS. The World Bank is prepared to enhance long-term financial and specialized technical support and knowledge to the countries of the world for effective prevention of new HIV infections, care and treatment for people living with HIV/AIDS, and alleviation of social and economic consequences for affected communities [7].

In the following days, the World Bank looks forward to meeting with world leaders, along with the leading International Government Organizations, Non-Government Organizations dedicated to combating HIV/AIDS, and our private sector partners in order to propose fresh global and regional programs for reducing the spread of HIV/AIDS around the globe and assisting the United Nations and the international community in achieving the goals set forth within the United Nations Millennium Goal number 6 by the year 2015.

Thank you very much. Good night.

1. Joint United Nations Programme On HIV/AIDS. Fast Facts about HIV, 2008. Accessed on March 19, 2013 from http://www.unaids.org/en/media/unaids/contentassets/dataimport/pub/factsheet/2008/20080519_fastfacts_hiv_en.pdf
2. World Bank. Overview: HIV/AIDS, 2012. Accessed on March 19, 2013 from http://web.worldbank.org/WBSITE/EXTERNAL/TOPICS/EXTHEALTHNUTRITIONANDPOPULATION/EXTHIVAIDS/0,,contentMDK:21546262~menuPK:376479~pagePK:210058~piPK:210062~theSitePK:376471,00.html
3. Joint United Nations Programme On HIV/AIDS. Global Fact Sheet, World AIDS Day 2012. Accessed on March 19. 2013 from http://www.unaids.org/en/media/unaids/contentassets/documents/epidemiology/2012/gr2012/20121120_FactSheet_Global_en.pdf
4. Joint United Nations Programme On HIV/AIDS. Global Fact Sheet, World AIDS Day 2012. Accessed on March 19. 2013 from http://www.unaids.org/en/media/unaids/contentassets/documents/epidemiology/2012/gr2012/20121120_FactSheet_Global_en.pdf
5. World Bank. Overview: HIV/AIDS, 2012. Accessed on March 19, 2013 from http://web.worldbank.org/WBSITE/EXTERNAL/TOPICS/EXTHEALTHNUTRITIONANDPOPULATION/EXTHIVAIDS/0,,contentMDK:21546262~menuPK:376479~pagePK:210058~piPK:210062~theSitePK:376471,00.html
6. Joint United Nations Programme On HIV/AIDS. Global Fact Sheet, World AIDS Day 2012. Accessed on March 19. 2013 from http://www.unaids.org/en/media/unaids/contentassets/documents/epidemiology/2012/gr2012/20121120_FactSheet_Global_en.pdf
7. World Bank. Overview: HIV/AIDS, 2012. Accessed on March 19, 2013 from http://web.worldbank.org/WBSITE/EXTERNAL/TOPICS/EXTHEALTHNUTRITIONANDPOPULATION/EXTHIVAIDS/0,,contentMDK:21546262~menuPK:376479~pagePK:210058~piPK:210062~theSitePK:376471,00.html

Response to Representative of Pfizer:

Representative of Pfizer,

Since our 2010 announced partnership for the initiative to help improve healthcare delivery in developing countries, the World Bank considers it an honor to work with your organization.  We look forward to much progress being achieved during this conference and against the disease of HIV/AIDS in the years to come.  The World Bank proposal that is scheduled for this evening will certainly rely heavily on the leading technological edge of the world medical field of Pfizer to supply the developing states in attendance who are re-dedicating their battle against the current epidemic of HIV/AIDS.

Sincerely,
World Bank

World Bank and Pfizer Announce Initiative to Help Improve Healthcare Delivery in Developing Countries.  World Bank/Pfizer press release, 2010.  Accessed on March 21, 2013 from http://www.pfizer.com/files/news/press_releases/2010/pfizer_world_bank_042310.pdf

World Bank Conference Proposal:

Good Evening.

Tonight the World Bank calls on the international community of the globe, along with the leading international governmental organizations and non-government organizations, with the support of the global private sector leaders in the specialized technological and medical fields, to increase collective and individual efforts in combating the world-wide epidemic of AIDS/HIV. This evening, the World Bank has reviewed the proposals of each nation-state in attendance, and the World Bank wishes to commend the nations of the world in their dedication to humanity. In response to your proposals for combating and preventing the HIV/AIDS epidemic, the World Bank is prepared to commit to a reinvigorated effort toward reaching United Nations Millennium Goal number 6 by the year 2015, or after the deadline should the goal require longer than the original timeframe.

For nation-states in attendance of the conference, the World Bank offers its assistance in preventing and combating the disease of HIV/AIDS within your nation-state borders. For developing countries in attendance, the World Bank is prepared to initiate domestic programs based on long-term and short-term credit ratings in order to finance the purchase of the most advanced technological medical machinery, cutting edge medicines and vaccines, the top vocational training in health fields, and the most proven methods in preventive education. In order to develop these humanitarian bi-lateral programs, negotiations between the World Bank and the individual member state must be initiated and the World Bank enthusiastically invites this initiative. For member states still considered in ‘developing’ status, the World Bank is eager to directly assist and establish a program aimed to prevent and repel the spread of HIV/AIDS. For ‘non-developing’ state members, the World Bank and the World Bank Group are prepared to assist in establishing a domestic program in addressing this most important and urgent area of human concern.

All economic programs developed between the World Bank and member states in combating HIV/AIDS on a national-domestic level will be conditionally based on the World Bank’s partnership with Pfizer, a private sector leader in medical research around the globe. All World Bank funding acquired by member states in addressing the issues of HIV/AIDS will be required to be utilized through planned purchasing from Pfizer, a proud partner to the World Bank in endeavors in humanitarian efforts.

In addition to what the World Bank is offering each individual nation-state in their efforts, the World Bank proposes that each member-state of the World Bank agree to contribute $50 million (US) Dollars a year to the United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) over the next ten years for collective consolidation and disbursement in HIV/AIDS prevention. World Bank Members at the conference tonight are: The People’s Republic of China, Japan, India, Thailand, Malaysia, Vietnam, Myanmar, The Philippines, Cambodia, Indonesia, and Pakistan.

While it is understandable that each nation-state requires its own security, and domestic and foreign interests, as paramount, the issues of the AIDS/HIV epidemic impacting the globe requires a collective humanitarian effort and economic sacrifice.

In closing, the World Bank applauds the members of the conference in their efforts towards meeting United Nations Millennium Goal number 6. Today is the first day toward a reinvigorated human effort.

World Bank. About World Bank – Member Countries, 2012. Accessed on March 21, 2013 from http://web.worldbank.org/WBSITE/EXTERNAL/EXTABOUTUS/0,,contentMDK:22427666~menuPK:8336899~pagePK:51123644~piPK:329829~theSitePK:29708,00.html
World Bank and Pfizer Announce Initiative to Help Improve Healthcare Delivery in Developing Countries. World Bank/Pfizer press release, 2010. Accessed on March 21, 2013 from http://www.pfizer.com/files/news/press_releases/2010/pfizer_world_bank_042310.pdf

Response to Representative of Pfizer:

Representative of Pfizer,

When the World Bank recommends that their member states donate $50 million dollars a year for ten years, this plan of action is not simply aimed at the members in attendance at this conference. It is aimed toward every active member of the World Bank, a total number of 188 nation-state members.

World Bank Closing Conference Vote and Closing Statement:

The World Bank appreciates being allowed to participate in this historic conference which has displayed the strength of collective national collaboration and the possibilities of addressing the global issue of HIV/AIDS. The World Bank views most of the proposals that were unveiled at the conference as very positive possible steps, and would especially like to support the following proposals:

- Enhanced dissemination of education on the disease of HIV/AIDS, the spread of HIV/AIDS, and the available methods of prevention.

- The establishment, or reinforcement, of national task forces and domestic laws aimed at the sex and drug trades. Concerning the sex industry: statistics show that human trafficking is a very serious issue globally, and that the sex industries in nations such as Thailand, Philippines and Japan contribute to the spread of HIV/AIDS. On the other hand, these nation-states do not see the amount of sexual assaults, rapes, or crimes against children as nations such as the United States and Britain, where prostitution occurs illegally and is often assailed by law enforcement officers, and the question of crime rate correlation should be contemplated by domestic governments. The World Bank supports all efforts for national task forces created against international and domestic illegal drug trades, especially as needle injected drugs contribute to the spread of HIV/AIDS. As an alternate for nation-states facing several problems in these areas, the World Bank recommends increasing the availability and dissemination of condoms and sterile needles in order to slow the spread of HIV/AIDS and other diseases associated with sexual activity and illegal drug usage.

- The availability for free or cost efficient HIV testing for populations of all economic classes within a nation. The question left unanswered by the representative of Japan, which will actually be required to be answered by each individual government to establish such a program, is how insurance companies unaffiliated to the conference will support such an initiative or whether the establishing government will be forced to burden the fiscal costs. In addition, the question of anonymous testing leaves the issue of possible continued spread of the disease, in some cases maliciously, by infected citizens not required to register as an infection citizen. The World Bank supports testing, but would seek an amendment requiring the registration of infected citizens to host government agencies.

- The hosting of regional conferences on HIV/AIDS, as proposed by Vietnam in their proposal for a summit of Southeastern Asian states, is strongly supported by the World Bank as a proactive way to continue communications, method sharing, and collaborated efforts.

- Further research on the disease of HIV/AIDS. As mentioned by the representative of Pakistan, research efforts on the disease of HIV/AIDS should be a top priority internationally and domestically. The World Bank agrees with Pakistan that prevention is the top defense position, while technological research of the disease of HIV/AIDS and new medical treatment options should be pursued.

The World Bank opposes the following proposal areas:

- The involvement of religious organizations in state management efforts for research, prevention or medical care in the areas of HIV/AIDS. The World Bank recognizes the possibility that religious prejudice toward homosexuals or non-affiliated religious members could produce a state associated atmosphere for religious discrimination.

-The World Bank opposes the proposals calling for private-sector entities, such as Pfizer, to donate or shoulder too much of the fiscal costs in the ongoing global efforts in medical treatment, testing, education or prevention. The World Bank feels that all leading private-sector entities in the medical field should maintain their capital for future medical research in the fields of HIV/AIDS. In addition, the problem of HIV/AIDS is not a short-term problem and will be a global and domestic issue for decades to come. The World Bank believes that each government must learn to economically budget their resources for the long-term issues, and views the provision of short-term donations as only delaying the inevitable.

Closing Concerns:

The World Bank’s largest concern at the conclusion of this conference is the lack of economic/fiscal consideration and proposal planning. Almost every area proposed during the conference clearly identified areas that, if conducted properly on the global or national level, will comprise of extensive economic costs. The World Bank was disappointed in the lack of economic responsibility during the conference.

As stated in our opening statement and during our conference proposal, the World Bank stands ready to work with any nation in making their global and domestic proposals an economic reality. Again, depending on long-term and short-term credit ratings, the World Bank, in its dedication to combat HIV/AIDS, is eager to work with any nation-state that is interested in economic responsibility for the long-term problem of HIV/AIDS and other diseases.

Thank You and Good Night.

No comments:

Post a Comment