Paul Booth - Profile PhotoPaul graduated from Wits University with a degrees in Politics and Philosophy. Prior to his recent relocation to Oxford Paul worked in South Africa’s Presidency as part of a team of two advising the Deputy President’s leadership of the country’s HIV response.

His work began at TAC and AIDS Law Project as part of the civil society effort to press government into re-establishing the South African National AIDS Council (SANAC). After the country removed ‘Mbeki’ and ‘Manto’ Paul moved from activism into the Health Department to help build a new SANAC secretariat and support the new Health Minister and Deputy President to transform the AIDS response. This included conceptualising and initially leading South Africa’s record-breaking national HIV counselling and testing campaign, through which 20 million people were tested for HIV and more than 1.5 million enrolled onto ART.

Outside of government Paul led the drafting of the first country-to-country PEPFAR agreement between the U.S. and South African governments, governing, for the first time, the then $580 million in PEPFAR annual development aid provided to South Africa. At the World Bank and at the WHO StopTB Partnership Paul authored and steered the signing of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Declaration on TB in the Mining Sector’, signed by 15 Heads of State in August 2012.

The END of AIDS will require much more effort and much greater investment than the unprecedented levels that we have already seen. We are asking that AIDS be funded above other competing development priorities. Legitimacy for this will only be achieved if we ensure that existing interventions are realising the results that they should be and at a reasonable price point…
I see the next step in the HIV prevention effort as the boring but oh so crucial bit – of selecting the appropriate mix of prevention interventions and then of managing their implementation so that countries are achieving measurable reductions in the incidence of new infections. This will require choosing what interventions, delivered in what way, to what extent, to which populations… Figuring out the answers to these questions and working at the national and global levels to drive this is what fires my passion for the HIV response.