Sad I’m not in Vienna (but happy that others are!)

As most of you may know the largest international AIDS conference on the planet is currently happening in Vienna.: AIDS 2010.  The theme is Right Here, Right Now, and it seems a main theme of the conference is to continue to highlight the connection between HIV and human rights.  I was fortunate enough to be able to attend the 2008 conference in Mexico City, where the theme was “Universal Action Now” and I even blogged some about the experience  for my old job, although not about MSM.  At that time I was also lucky enough to attend the Global Forum on Men who Have Sex with Men and HIV pre-conference satellite session on HIV and men who have sex with men.  Well the good folks at MSMGF put on another pre-conference this year which had an exciting line up of speakers , including policy makers and researchers.  The agenda can be found here.  I’m also happy to learn that some (non-MSM focussed)  development organizations that I have worked closely with throughout the past few years,  including John Snow Inc. (JSI), and Population Services International (PSI) have co-sponsored the event.

Interesting, I just read (after posting this) about Chris Beyrer’s presentation (he works at Johns Hokpins like me) about modeling MSM and HIVin Africa! While I have read some of his papers I have no doubt this was a rievting presnetation (and blog appropriate!).

For those of us who can not take part in the festivities, we are lucky enough to be able to experience Video Coverage of AIDS 2010Mark King’s video coverage of not only the MSM workshops, but of the whole (sometimes crazy) event.  He is videoblogging for

I am glad to see that the Global Forum is doing such great work for us men who have sex with men, and that we will have a prominent voice at Vienna 2010.  I also hope those of us not at the conference troll around the Internet to try to pick up relevant snippets of the conference.

I am looking forward to being in DC (my current hometown) for AIDS 2012  – the first time in decades the conference will be in the US, since the HIV-related entry restrictions for the US have been (slowly) lifted.  This in itself, will be a historic event.  Now if I can just convince my med school preceptors I’ll need the time off… and if you will be in town in two years and need some place to stay let me know.

To close, the 2008 conference impacted me so: I can still remember the opening ceremonies in Mexico City with the grupo singing “Accion Universal..” (no I didn’t take the video). 

This was the theme of the conference (now this is me being sentimental since I know there is SUCH great things going on in Vienna right now). – universal access to treatment and prevention for all.  And as Bill Clinton has said at Vienna, universal access is far from bring reached.

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