December 1st is World AIDS Day. With 2011 marking 30 years since the Centers for Disease Control made the first mention of the disease that would come to be known HIV, this anniversary is especially poignant. Johnson & Johnson and our Family of Companies remain committed to the prevention, detection, education and treatment of HIV/AIDS, and I wanted to share with you some of those ongoing efforts.
In our commitment to HIV prevention, care and support, Johnson & Johnson’s Corporate Contributions group partners with organizations working both globally and locally in over 100 programs. For example:
• Employing HIV-positive mothers to mentor newly-diagnosed HIV-positive pregnant women in South Africa.
• Enhancing the leadership and management skills of domestic AIDS Service Organizations to improve service delivery.
• Teaching kids in Zimbabwe about HIV prevention through fun and engaging soccer drills. Linking HIV-positive individuals to care in China.
• Using village savings and loan groups in Malawi as a forum to teach men and women about HIV/AIDS and health.
• Supporting orphans and vulnerable children infected and affected by HIV/AIDS in communities around the world.
These are just a few of the innovative and meaningful domestic and global programs that Johnson & Johnson supports.
Today, Janssen U.K. launched its Janssen in HIV YouTube channel in order to share videos and raise awareness. Our own Johnson & Johnson Health Channel on YouTube features a playlist of videos titled The Journey: Living with HIV. These insightful videos offer a look at how four individuals – Chad, Hattie, Andre and Daniel – were able to overcome many of the barriers to care that people with HIV/AIDS face.
EnnTV, our video news magazine for employees, premiered its third episode today, which focuses on World AIDS Day. The episode features an interview with Dr. Paul Stoffels, Worldwide Chairman, Pharmaceuticals, as well as segments on the Research & Development teams from Janssen Pharmaceutica NV and Tibotec NV, and a look at the Princeton in Africa program, a program that Johnson & Johnson supports.
15 years after our operating company Ortho Clinical Diagnostics (OCD) introduced the first test kit to screen blood for antigens to HIV-1, the virus that is responsible for the vast majority of AIDS cases in the U.S., OCD is continuing to make products that help in HIV detection. These products are important in helping making transfusion medicine safer and more efficient, helping to keep the blood supply safe for patients.
World AIDS Day serves as a reminder that while significant progress has been made in the global battle against HIV/AIDS, there is still much more to be done. We are proud of Johnson & Johnson’s legacy of leadership in this fight, humbled by our partners’ tireless efforts, and inspired by the passion, innovation, and commitment of those who continue to be involved.