Swiss global health-care firm Roche has launched a global access programme for HIV viral load testing to combat AIDS, tuberculosis (TB) and malaria.
The programme has been created in partnership with UNAIDS, the joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS, the Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI), the President's Emergency Plan For AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) and the Global Fund.
The company has committed to provide its COBAS AmpliPrep/COBAS TaqMan HIV-1 Test version 2.0 through a special pricing scheme for qualifying organisations in eligible countries in order to support the global access programme.
The programme has been designed as part of the diagnostics access initiative, which will involve in expanding laboratory capacity to help people living with HIV in receiving high-quality HIV treatment services.
This initiative was launched during the 20th International AIDS conference in July 2014.
CHAI access programmes executive vice-president David Ripin said: "The global access programme is a major step forward in improving the quality of care for HIV patients and preventing further transmission of the disease.
"This is an admirable and rapid response to the challenge issued by UNAIDS at the 2014 AIDS Conference to increase access to high quality treatment to patients living with HIV and AIDS.
"CHAI is proud to be part of this partnership, and looks forward to working with Roche, governments and partners to ensure that the terms of the program translate to increased patient access."
There were 35 million people living with HIV around the world in 2012, accordingly to the World Health Organization (WHO).
Roche Diagnostics chief operating officer Roland Diggelmann said: "As the leader in HIV viral load testing, Roche supports the UNAIDS 90:90:90 goal and the diagnostics access initiative by expanding access to quality HIV testing through affordable pricing to those countries hardest hit by the disease.
"With 70% of all people living with HIV residing in Sub-Saharan Africa, we believe our commitment can truly make a difference to UNAIDS's goal for achieving control of the HIV/AIDS epidemic."