Global health experts

…putting knowledge into action

ICAP is Empowering Health Around the World A global health leader since 2003, ICAP was founded at Columbia University with one overarching goal: to improve the health of families and communities. Together with our partners—ministries of health, large multilaterals, health care providers, and patients—we strive for a world where health is available to all. Our roots are in comprehensive, family-focused HIV services and high-performing health system strengthening initiatives that provide quality and affordable health care. Today, we tackle the world’s most pressing health threats and implement sustainable solutions to meet the health needs of individuals, communities and nations. Through pioneering research and thought leadership, we promote innovative, effective, and ethical programs. And by enhancing health information systems, improving quality, and developing human resources for health, we build capacity and efficiency in the world’s most challenging, resource-limited settings. To date, we have addressed major public health challenges and the needs of local health systems through 6,000 sites across 30 countries.

 

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In the 30 years since the HIV/AIDS pandemic began, more than 25 million lives have been lost to the disease. Today, an estimated 38.6 million people worldwide are infected with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS.Each year, an additional four million people, including 700,000 children, are newly infected. In developing countries hardest hit by the disease, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa, HIV/AIDS has drastically reduced adult life expectancy and orphaned 15 million children.

In recognition of this vast human suffering, governments and international organizations launched various initiatives to provide life-saving antiretroviral treatment (ART) to HIV-infected people. Despite these commitments and the progress that has been made, both treatment and prevention efforts have fallen well short of goals. In sub-Saharan Africa, more than 80 percent of HIV-infected people, including 1.9 million children, who need ART are not receiving it. New infections also continue to occur at staggering rates.

ICAP’s leadership has been actively engaged in the global HIV crisis since the beginning

ICAP was founded in 2003 under the leadership of Dr. Wafaa El-Sadr at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. One of the world’s leading public health experts, Dr. El-Sadr was instrumental in demonstrating that it is possible to effectively scale up HIV prevention, care, and treatment services in resource-limited settings. She and her ICAP colleagues led the world’s first multi-country HIV treatment program—enrolling nearly 14,000 women and children in sub-Saharan Africa and Thailand in HIV treatment at a time when skeptics deemed this to be unfeasible. This achievement formed the basis of one of ICAP’s key guiding principles: quality health care should be available to everyone. Today, more than 2.4 million people around the world have accessed HIV care through ICAP support. Today, ICAP’s work has expanded to address other major health threats, including tuberculosis, maternal and child health, malaria, and non-communicable diseases. ICAP collaborates with local and national institutions in the US, sub-Saharan Africa, and Central Asia to strengthen health systems and to implement innovative and sustainable health solutions.

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