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AHF Urges WHO to Declare Coronavirus an International Emergency



LOS ANGELES — With the deadly novel coronavirus originating in China and spreading to fifteen other countries , AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) urges the World Health Organization (WHO) to immediately declare the virus a public health emergency of international concern (PHEIC).

AHF urges WHO to immediately declare novel coronavirus a Public Health Emergency of International Concern.

“It is absurd that WHO does not consider the new coronavirus an international threat,” said AHF President Michael Weinstein. “With the criticism WHO has faced before in dealing with Ebola, it’s clearly better to be safe than sorry.

The world is at risk and once again this is a reminder that we desperately need a global convention on public health to be better prepared for deadly outbreaks. We urge WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus to not waste time and immediately declare the coronavirus a PHEIC.”

Since the WHO emergency committee met on January 22 and 23—when it decided it would not declare the virus a global public health emergency—the number of those infected has jumped from 557 to nearly 3,000, with 16 countries total reporting cases.

Chinese authorities also reported new data that showed increases in total cases, suspected cases, affected provinces and the mortality rate (4%), according to WHO.

The virus has so far been responsible for 81 deaths and meets the conditions for a PHEIC to be declared, as it is a public health risk to other states through the international spread of disease and potentially requires a coordinated international response.

“In addition to an immediate emergency declaration, we call on the UN Security Council to be convened to act on this crisis, as it should in response to any major outbreak,” added Weinstein. ”AHF operates in 43 countries, including in China and seven others that have seen infected patients – we know firsthand what happens when infectious disease outbreaks devastate entire communities. All options should be considered to contain the outbreak and help those who have been impacted.”

The cause has not yet been established, but many patients were reportedly linked to a large seafood and animal market in Wuhan, China, suggesting the virus likely emerged from an animal source and is now spreading person-to-person.

For more information, please contact Ged Kenslea at or (323) 791-5526

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Celebrity News

Elizabeth Taylor Legacy Award Recognizes Sharon Stone – April 30



LOS ANGELES — The Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation (ETAF) has announced that Golden Globe and EMMY Award-winning actress, producer, activist and humanitarian Sharon Stone will receive the Elizabeth Taylor Legacy Award at the Foundation’s inaugural fundraising gala The Elizabeth Taylor Ball to End AIDS on April 30, 2020.

The gala will be held on the backlot of Fox Studios and will be generously supported by title sponsors Gilead Sciences and BVLGARI. 

The Elizabeth Taylor Legacy Award recognizes profound leadership in the fight against HIV and AIDS, recognizing individuals who have historically committed themselves to helping those affected by HIV and AIDS through various efforts from arts to policy to activism.

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The award honors the memory of Elizabeth Taylor’s legacy of compassion and courage while on the forefront of the movement to help people affected by HIV. “I started my quest for a vaccine and a cure at the request of Elizabeth Taylor when she asked me to fill in for her at amfAR for one night in Cannes. That one night became a 22-year commitment of HIV/AIDS work, study, and fundraising around the globe and a full understanding of what commitment itself means,” said Stone. 

“I ask all of you to join me in not only honoring this path which Elizabeth forged, but one which we as committed humanitarians must end. 770,000 people died of HIV/AIDS last year and one person every three seconds STILL gets HIV/AIDS.

Please help us end Elizabeth’s brave and incredibly daring and loving task and celebrate that commitment to life!” Off screen, Stone’s charitable foundations have given life and hope to people around the world. At the United Nations on World AIDS Day 1995, Stone accepted an invitation to serve for three years as Chairwoman of amfAR’s Campaign for AIDS Research.

In 1998, as her term was coming to a close, Stone renewed her support of amfAR’s vital innovative research programs by vowing to continue as campaign chairman until a safe and effective AIDS vaccine was developed. Since accepting this key position with amfAR, Stone has traveled nationally and internationally on behalf of the Foundation and is now their Global Chairman for Campaign Fundraising.

She has worked tirelessly to heighten awareness of HIV/AIDS as a threat to social and economic stability, and to underscore the urgent needs for continued AIDS research. Stone is dedicated to this cause, helping to raise hundreds of millions of dollars for the battle against AIDS. Past recipients of the Elizabeth Taylor Legacy Award include Michael Jackson (2018), Elton John (2017), Whoopi Goldberg (2016), Nancy Pelosi (2015) and Aileen Getty (2014). 

The inaugural Elizabeth Taylor Ball to End AIDS will include a seated dinner for 350 guests, an exciting live auction featuring unique works of art and luxury experiences with Andrea Fiuczynski serving as auctioneer, live performance, and dancing. Guests will also be given a first-time up-close look at exclusive items from The Elizabeth Taylor Archive including highlights from Elizabeth Taylor’s personal life, film career, and humanitarian legacy.  

The Ball Committee includes ETAF Ambassador Lyn Rothman, Andrea Fiuczynski, Martine Laing, Jean-Christophe Laizeau, Kay Saatchi, Begum Sen, Pate Stevens and Yi Zhou. Also sponsoring the event is American Airlines, ETAF’s official airline. 


Working tirelessly on the AIDS crisis throughout the 1980s, Elizabeth Taylor established The Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation (ETAF) in 1991 to carry out her vision for an AIDS-free world. ETAF works to provide the direct care needed for people living with and affected by HIV and AIDS. Emphasizing Elizabeth’s commitment and concentration on marginalized communities, ETAF’s work has expanded to ensure that HIV prevention education and access to treatment is available through domestic and international initiatives.

We now have the necessary tools to stop the spread of HIV and end the AIDS crisis with sufficient resources. 

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Cedars Surgeon Restores Hand Movement for Girl Injured by Syrian Bomb



LOS ANGELES — One night nearly three years ago, a barrel bomb exploded outside Aysha Al Saloom’s home in northern Syria, as the 5-year-old girl lay sleeping in her bed. The blast left Aysha severely burned and disfigured, turning her hands into stiff balls of flesh and unable to hold a crayon or feed herself.

Seeking medical care and a better life for her daughter, Aysha’s mother, Hana Al Saloom, fled the violence of their native Idlib province, one of the last major rebel strongholds in Syria’s civil war.

Over the next three years, mother and daughter made their way to Turkey, eventually landing in Los Angeles. The trip and Aysha’s medical treatment were made possible by the Burnt Children Relief Foundation which sponsored them.

Aysha endured 20 surgeries to repair her broken and scarred body, but her hands remained lifeless. Until now. Dr. David Kulber at Cedars-Sinai, rebuilt Aysha’s hands through multiple surgeries, allowing the precocious 8-year-old to be able to return to doing the things she loves: writing, drawing and dancing.

Dr. Kulber is one part of an international effort to save Aysha. The Children’s Burn Foundation, the Turkish Consulate in Los Angeles, and several humanitarian organizations continue to come together to give Aysha a second chance. 

Since arriving in America, Aysha has taught herself English by watching Saturday cartoons and joking with her healthcare providers. She has once again become the active, perky girl she was in Syria before her injury.

“The inquisitive mind, positive attitude and joy with which this little girl approaches life, are inspiring,” Kulber said. “She has turned a terrible tragedy into a positive and makes you realize that there is always hope.”

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ABC Boss Hosts Fundraiser for Children’s Hospital Transyouth Center



Dr. Johanna Olson-Kennedy, who has been treating patients at the Children's Hospital Transyouth Center since 2006.

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Report) — The ABC Network President and ‘Project Runway’ creator is honoring the work of Dr. Johanna Olson-Kennedy, who has been treating patients at the Children’s Hospital Transyouth Center since 2006.

Upon a first glance of the Bottega Lorenzetto Art Studio, visitors can see walls covered with abstract portraitures not only bold in shape and color, but also fluid in design.

The colorful gallery located on Sunset in West Hollywood became the site for a fundraiser event on Saturday aimed to benefit The Center for Transyouth Health and Development.

The fundraiser was hosted by Project Runway creator Jane Cha Cutler and ABC Network President Karey Burke, who spent the night honoring the work of Dr. Johanna Olson-Kennedy, a longtime physician at the […]

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