New HIV infections cut by one-third since 2001
The number of new HIV infections among adults and children declined by 33% since 2001, according to a new report issued by the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS.
Among children specifically, there were 260,000 new HIV infections in 2012, a reduction of 52% since 2001. In addition, the number of AIDS-related deaths has decreased by 30% since the peak in 2005, according to the report.
“As a result of working together, many countries are now within reach of achieving several of the key targets outlined in the 2011 UN Political Declaration on HIV and AIDS,” UNAIDS Executive Director Michel Sidibé wrote in a foreword to the report. “However, this report also includes notes of caution, as well as signs of stagnating progress toward other targets and elimination commitments.”
In 26 countries, the annual number of new sexually transmitted HIV infections decreased by at least 50%, but other countries have not met this target, especially those in sub-Saharan Africa. In addition, the findings suggest that the world is not on track to reduce HIV transmission by 50% among injection drug users.
Although the number of new infections in children has decreased significantly, and the number of pregnant women with HIV receiving ART has increased, more prevention strategies are needed to reach the goal of eliminating HIV infections among children by 2015, the report suggests.
In 2011, the UN Member States agreed to a 2015 target of reaching 15 million people with HIV treatment, and the world is on track to meet this goal. However, the 2013 WHO HIV treatment guidelines expanded the number of people who need ART treatment by 10 million.
Other findings outlined in the report include a decline of tuberculosis-related deaths among people with HIV. In addition, there has been stagnant funding for HIV, and the total global resources available for HIV in 2012 was $3 billion to $5 billion short.
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