New UNAIDS Report Shows Significant Drop in HIV

The latest UNAIDS report illustrates hopeful progress towards reducing the burden of HIV/AIDS. The report found a significant drop in the number of new HIV infections in children- a decrease of 24% from the number of new infections in 2009. A high number of countries in sub-Saharan Africa also showed a major drop in total new infections. According to Michel Sidibé, the executive director of UNAIDS, “Twenty-five countries have reduced the number of new infections by more than 50%.’”

In addition to preventing new HIV infections, sub-Saharan Africa has also decreased AIDS related deaths and increased the number of people being treated for HIV/AIDS. In just two years the number of people receiving antiretroviral treatment in sub-Saharan Africa increased by 59%.

However there are still approximately 7 million people who need treatment and aren’t receiving it. And globally there are 34 million people living with HIV/AIDS. Despite the hurdles the UN remains hopeful that they can reach their goal of reducing HIV transmission in half by 2015. According to Dr Manica Balasegaram, the Executive Director of Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders Access Campaign, ‘"Scaling up HIV treatment to 15 million people from 8 million today is feasible and has the crucial triple benefit of reducing illness, reducing death, and reducing the risk of transmission."’

Michel Sidibé stated: “The pace of progress is quickening—what used to take a decade is now being achieved in 24 months.”’

Read about the UNAIDS Report here:

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